2005-10-22 00:00:00

non-IT ways to reduce medication errors

Ok, I write articles on healthcare IT but I just read a great article on how to reduce medication errors that CPOE (Computerized Physician Order Entry) implementations are still not catching. The author says:

…patients continue to suffer from medication errors. Many of these could be prevented by projects a lot simpler, faster, and cheaper than CPOE. I’m speaking as both a pharmacist and IT director. In addition, these activities can help prepare you organization for eventual CPOE adoption. I’m not even talking about mid-tech projects such as barcoding. These are non-IT steps that require little investment, just unwavering commitment and willingness to do the right thing.

Click here to read the article. I loved how he ended the article:

It’s just amazing that hospitals don’t want to fix bad processes, but they naively expect that CPOE will heal all. Let’s face it: if your staff and docs don’t follow the rules now, they won’t follow it with CPOE either. I’ll bet you have bunches of policies on order scheduling, abbreviations, legibility, order dating and signing, restricted drugs, and many others that are completely ignored. How are you going to build this random interpretation and illogical processing into a CPOE-driven automated environment? Answer: you aren’t. Before you get your hopes up for CPOE, clean up your existing house first. You just might save a few patients while you wait for that magic wand.

Filed under: — @ 2005-10-22 00:00:00