IHI Trigger Tool for Measuring Adverse Drug Events
This tool provides instructions for conducting a retrospective review of patient records using "triggers" (clues) to identify possible adverse drug events (ADEs), a list of known ADE triggers, and instructions for measuring the number and degree of harmful medication events.
- Background on the development of the Trigger Tool
- List of adverse drug event triggers
- Case studies
- Record Review Sheets: ADE Patient, Pediatric ADE Patient
- ADE Monthly Summary Sheet
Tool provided by: Institute for Healthcare Improvement (Boston, MA, USA), in partnership with Premier, Inc. (San Diego, CA, USA)
The use of "triggers," or clues, to identify adverse drug events (ADEs) is an effective method for measuring the overall level of harm from medications in a health care organization. The Trigger Tool for Measuring Adverse Drug Events provides instructions for conducting a retrospective review of patient records using triggers to identify possible ADEs. This tool includes:
- A list of known ADE triggers
- Instructions for measuring the number and degree of harmful medication events
- Instructions and forms for collecting the data you need to measure ADEs per 1,000 Doses and Percent of Admissions with an ADE
- Rozich JD, Haraden CR, Resar RK. Adverse drug event trigger tool: A practical methodology for measuring medication related harm. Quality and Safety in Health Care. 2003;12:194-200.
- IHI Global Trigger Tool for Measuring Adverse Events
- Introduction to Trigger Tools
The Institute for Healthcare Improvement formed the Idealized Design of the Medication System (IDMS) Group in May 2000. The group of 30 physicians, pharmacists, nurses, and statisticians established an aim to design a medication system that is safer by a factor of 10 and more cost effective than systems currently in use.
Adverse drug events present the single greatest risk of harm to patients in hospitals. Traditional efforts to detect ADEs have focused on voluntary reporting and tracking of errors. However, public health researchers have established that only 10 to 20 percent of errors are ever reported and, of those, 90 to 95 percent cause no harm to patients. Hospitals need a more effective way to identify events that do cause harm to patients, in order to select and test changes to reduce harm.
This Trigger Tool provides an easy-to-use method for accurately identifying ADEs (harm from medications) and measuring the rate of ADEs over time. Tracking ADEs over time is a useful way to tell if changes the team is making are improving the safety of the medication system. Hundreds of hospitals have used this tool to identify ADEs, to measure the level of harm from each ADE, and to identify areas for improvement in their organizations.