Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

Health Services Research & Development

Go to the ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Medication discrepancies in integrated electronic health records.

Linsky A, Simon SR. Medication discrepancies in integrated electronic health records. BMJ quality & safety. 2013 Feb 1; 22(2):103-9.

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information vaww.hsrd.research.va.gov/dimensions/

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions



Abstract:

INTRODUCTION: Medication discrepancies are associated with adverse drug events. Electronic health records (EHRs) may reduce discrepancies, especially if integrated with pharmacy dispensing. We determined the prevalence of discrepancies within a national healthcare system with EHR-pharmacy linkage to characterise the medications involved and to identify factors associated with discrepancies. METHODS: We conducted a retrospective cohort study of ambulatory care patients at Veterans Affairs Boston Healthcare System, April 2010-July 2011. The primary outcome was the presence of any medication discrepancy or specific types of discrepancies: commission-present in the record but not taken by patient; omission-not present in the record; duplication-present more than once; or alteration in dose or frequency-present but taken differently than documented. RESULTS: Sixty-two patients (60%) had at least one medication discrepancy. Prevalence of commissions, omissions, duplications and alterations were 36%, 27%, 11% and 19%, respectively. The involved medications differed by type of discrepancy, but non-opioid analgesics and herbal therapies were common among commissions and omissions. In adjusted analyses, an increasing number of medications was associated with more commissions (OR 1.2; 95% CI 1.1 to 1.3) and duplications (OR 1.2; 95% CI 1.1 to 1.4) and fewer omissions (OR 0.9; 95% CI 0.8 to 1.0). DISCUSSION: In a system with a well established EHR linked to pharmacy dispensing, medication discrepancies occurred in 60% of ambulatory clinic patients. Patients with a greater number of medications were more likely to have errors of commission and duplication, but less likely to have errors of omission. Our findings highlight that relying on EHRs alone will not ensure an accurate medication list and stress the need to review medication taking thoroughly with patients to capitalise on the full potential of EHRs.





Questions about the HSR&D website? Email the Web Team.

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.