Sunrise computer glitch a serious risk

7 May 2021

The ANMF (SA Branch) has written to Local Health Networks in relation to the serious issues of the Sunrise computer system adding an extra digit to medication dosages. View letter here.

This error has a clear potential to cause direct risk to patients being cared for by our members.

On Wednesday night, staff at the RAH, TQEH and Noarlunga Hospital were sent an urgent memo informing them of an issue with the Sunrise computer system.

“This issue can result in the last digit of the medication dose being duplicated prior to order submission, e.g., 10mg may display as 100mg, 15mg may display as 155mg. It is important for all staff to be aware and carefully review all medication orders,’’ the memo stated.

“Prescribers should review all orders in the order entry worksheet prior to submission and correct the dose as required. Nursing and Midwifery staff should be alert to high-dose medication orders and follow-up with prescribers prior to administration.”

The ANMF (SA Branch) is seeking an urgent outline of the safety systems and measures the LHNs are implementing to address this risk and request that additional additional nursing and/or midwifery staff are placed in each area, on each shift throughout the hospital, due to the increased risk to care delivery and associated increased workload the Sunrise system malfunction will cause.

We note with extreme concern that this error and risk was not notified to us directly. It is our position that matters relating to professional practice and issues that affect our members’ ability to provide safe and effective care are matters that should be brought to our attention by the LHNs.  

Due to the significance and clear urgency of the situation ANMF (SA Branch) is seeking a response to this correspondence by COB, today, May 7, 2021.
If you have any queries or require further information, please contact your Worksite Representative or a Professional Liaison Officer.