Can they identify your code cart?
- As mentioned previously, to improve both patient response times and outcomes, your code cart should stand out from other procedure carts in a unit or hallway. This can easily be accomplished by having the cart ALL RED or ALL BLUE ensuring that from any angle of view, the code cart can be identified swiftly. Is your staff trained to identify your code cart in an emergency?
Are your staff adequately trained to rapidly find items in the cart?
- Hospitals should have regularly scheduled training on their code carts to familiarize clinicians on staff with where supplies, medication, and equipment are located.
- Scheduling “Mock Codes” with nursing education is a great way to reinforce this training with your staff.
- Nurse education should have a couple of training code carts that can be used for “Mock Codes” and other training. This keeps the regular fleet of code carts available for patient use.
Are they inspecting the code cart regularly to ensure it’s ready for use?
- A common safety error that can impact patient safety are improperly inspected code carts that have outdated or missing supplies.
- It is recommended that each shift check the code carts on their units to ensure the tamper evident seals are still intact on the cart and that all external supplies and equipment are accounted for and properly working.
- Do staff members know who to contact in your hospital if their code cart inspection reveals that something is missing or needs to be addressed? Typically, this would be the Central Supply Department, but be sure to train staff on who to call for assistance with your facility’s code carts. Something as simple as putting a label on the cart with a contact number can be helpful.