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Safe Medication Administration

Bar code medication administration (BCMA) systems are electronic scanning systems that use both a bar code on a patient’s ID bracelet and the medication package to help ensure the right patient gets the right medication at the right time. Hospitals report on the percentage of inpatient units in which BCMA is used, the percentage of medication administrations where both the patient and medication were scanned in units were BCMA is being used, the use of clinical decision support to alert nurses if something is wrong (i.e. wrong patient), and structures to reduce workarounds that decrease the effectiveness of BCMA systems.

Fact sheet on BCMA

BCMA bibliography


Reporting Period 

  • Latest 3 months prior to Survey submission

Patients Included in the Measure

  • Inpatients (Patients who are admitted to the hospital for at least one overnight stay)

  • Adults and Children