A new study has shown that electronic medical records (EMR) can reduce medical errors for hospitalized HIV patients, as reported by MedPage Today. The use of an EMR system helped reduce medication errors from 16% to 1.1%, a 93% reduction, among HIV patients hospitalized for non-HIV related health issues.
HIV patients who are hospitalized for non-HIV issues often get prescribed drugs incorrectly in hospitals. HIV patients have a strict drug regimen that require precise doses and timing. Most of the medication errors that occur with these patients in the hospital include altered drug timing and dose frequency.
This may be due to the inexperience of hospital staff with HIV patients’ complex drug regimens. Additionally, patients assume that their physician has changed their drug regimen on purpose, so they continue with the incorrectly altered drug regimen until they next visit their primary care physician. This can lead to health complications for HIV patients.
EMR systems can help hospitals monitor drug regimens and dosing. A drug schedule can be set up for each patient, allowing hospital staff to easily follow each patient’s specific drug regimen. This drug schedule can be shared among a patient’s health care providers, allowing the data to be consistent and up to date.
Before the EMR was implemented, the study found that 14 drug timing errors occurred in one hospital. However, after the EMR system was implemented, only one drug timing error occurred.
This study has shown that EMR systems can help reduce error rates, such as drug prescription and timing errors. EMR systems can improve patient safety and can even help save hospitals and patients around $25,000!
Read our page to find out more about the benefits of EMR.