The use of electronic prescribing has dramatically reduced medication errors at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, according to a study in the March edition of the Journal of Psychiatric Practice.

The study revealed that while using health IT, the medication error rate dropped from 27.89 per 1,000 patient days to 3.43 per 1,000 patient days over a five-year period. In addition, there were no drug errors that caused permanent harm or death of patients over the course of the study, which spanned nearly 620,000 drug doses. The findings, available to subscribers, were published by amednews.com.     

Another report, conducted in the March issue of Health Affairs, showed that of 154 peer-reviewed studies from 2007 to 2010 that looked at health IT, 92 percent reached positive conclusions regarding electronic medical records (EMRs).

According to amednews.com, which reported the findings, 96 of the studies — which focused on issues such as patient satisfaction, access to care, efficiency and effectiveness of care, patient safety and access to care — indicated there were improvements in one or more aspects of care after the implementation of EMRs. In total, including the 96 positive studies, approximately 140 of the analyses had positive or mixed results.

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