Medication Errors Research Paper

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Medication Errors: Prevention Using Information Technology Systems Medication errors are among the most common medical errors, harming and costing millions of patients in the world very year. Prevention of medication errors is, therefore, a high priority worldwide. Nowadays, various information technology (IT) systems are widely used to prevent and reduce medication errors. Computerized physician order entry (CPOE) with patient-specific decision support is one of the most powerful IT systems used by physicians to improve patient safety in various healthcare settings. As an example, application of CPOE systems has significantly reduced errors related to dosing of psychoactive medications. Pharmacy dispensing systems, including drug-dispensing…show more content…
Bar-coded medication administration (BCMA) systems are also commonly used by nurses to improve medication administration in inpatient settings. As an illustration, a study in 2007 showed that BCMA systems reduced medication administration errors by 54-87% in hospitals in the US. It has been reported that a large number of medication errors happens at care transition points, i.e., during admission, transfer and discharge of patients. Thus, medication reconciliation at all transition points could significantly improve medication safety. In fact, preliminary evidences suggest that application of electronic medication reconciliation systems are quite effective in reducing such errors. Additionally, electronic personal health record (EHR) systems can be used to reduce medication errors. These IT systems allow patients to access, coordinate their health information and make it available to their healthcare providers. IT systems are also used to reduce medication errors of omission. As an example, recent studies have demonstrated that smart electronic discharge systems utilized in some hospitals can alert physicians to prescribe important medications.
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