Podcast #201: Task Interruption

Author: Mark Kozlowski M.D.

Educational Pearls:

  • Humans cannot “multitask” effectively – a more accurate term is “task interruption.”
  • When doing more than one task at once, we are more likely to forget key details and perform both tasks more slowly overall.
  • Do not interrupt people who are focusing on critical tasks – programming a pump or drawing up doses.
  • Think about ways to reduce task interruption in your hospital for a better clinical practice.

References: Westbrook JI, Woods A, Rob MI, Dunsmuir WTM, Day RO. Association of Interruptions With an Increased Risk and Severity of Medication Administration Errors. Arch Intern Med. 2010;170(8):683-690. doi:10.1001/archinternmed.2010.65


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