Errors in IVF

There have been at least three high profile IVF errors reported in the last month (Netherlands, Czech Republic and Israel), which adds to the growing tally of errors reported worldwide.

We all make mistakes, because we’re human and this is the most fundamental risk an electronic witnessing system should address – the risk of human error.

Why do mistakes happen ?

Despite using verbal checks to ensure patient safety, healthcare staff do make mistakes. One explanation for this is that humans are inclined to respond automatically to questioning without matching their actions to their words – known as ‘involuntary automaticity’.

Introducing automated systems such as barcoding is suggested as an effective way of reducing mistakes caused by human error.

(Ref: Involuntary automaticity: a work-system induced risk to safe health care. Health Serv Manage Res. 2005 Nov;18(4):211-6.)

The tip of the iceberg

We have a tally of some of the most well known catastrophic mistakes from the last decade. Each resulted in complex litigation, financial expense, and reputational damage, as well as the emotional and ethical consequences.

But we also know that these are likely to be only the tip of the iceberg.

Every step in the chain of custody needs to be covered seamlessly. A chain is only as strong as its weakest link, so there can be no weak links where human verification is required.

And in a cycle of IVF there can be over 20 such procedures, so risk may be higher than you think. Analysis of our data across many countries indicates Matcher prevents at least one mistake every month in every clinic.

Please contact us for more information about how Matcher can help reduce the risk of human error in IVF clinics and donor banks worldwide.