Study: Emergency Department EHR Design Can Lead To Errors

Staffwriter | iHealthBeat | June 25, 2013

Emergency department electronic health record systems have varying functionality that can lead to problems with "physician decision-making, clinician workflow, communication, and, ultimately, the overall quality of care and patient safety," according to a report published in the current edition of Annals of Emergency Medicine, Modern Healthcare reports.

The report -- titled "Quality and Safety Implications of Emergency Department Information Systems" -- was written by the American College of Emergency Physicians' work groups on informatics, and quality improvement and patient safety (Conn, Modern Healthcare, 6/24).

EDIS Pitfalls

The report details four scenarios in which EDISs can lead to medical errors, including:

  • Communication failures;
  • Poor data displays;
  • Wrong order or wrong patient mistakes; and
  • Alert fatigue (Goedert, Health Data Management, 6/24).