Failure modes and effects analysis of blood work checking in a chemotherapy environment: A capacity-building project

August 2012 to Present


Failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA) is a commonly-used risk management tool in healthcare organizations. It is a technique intended to prospectively identify and prioritize hazards in an environment, and is conducted in interdisciplinary teams of expert users of a system.

A hospital wished to help build FMEA capacity in their organization, with a special focus on human factors elements of the system. HumanEra was therefore identified as a team that could guide them through an FMEA, while also teaching about human factors and the FMEA technique.

The clinical area of focus for this analysis was bloodwork assessment in an outpatient chemotherapy environment. Bloodwork checking is an important part of cancer patient assessment and safety: eligibility for treatment, and sometimes drug dosage, are affected by blood results.

HumanEra helped the local risk management department through all steps of the FMEA, from process-mapping, failure mode identification and ranking, and development of recommendations. This was achieved through phone consults, and in-person meetings and group facilitations.

The organization will now be implementing recommendations developed by the FMEA group, as well as carrying on with further FMEA analyses on their own.

Funding Agency

CancerCare Manitoba

Project Sponsor

Tony Easty


Project Team

Rachel White
Melissa Griffin

For more information on this project, contact:

Rachel White