El Camino Hospital: using health information technology to promote patient safety.
ABSTRACT BACKGROUND: El Camino Hospital is a leader in the use of health information technology to promote patient safety, including bar coding, computerized order entry, electronic medical records, and wireless communications. OVERALL APPROACH TO QUALITY AND SAFETY: Each year, El Camino Hospital's board of directors sets performance expectations for the chief executive officer, which are tied to achievement of local, regional, and national safety and quality standards, including the six Institute of Medicine quality dimensions. He then determines a set of explicit quality goals and measurable actions, which serve as guidelines for the overall hospital. The goals and progress reports are widely shared with employees, medical staff, patients and families, and the public. ADDRESSING THE SIX IOM QUALITY AIMS: For safety, for example, the medication error reduction team tracks and reviews medication error rates. The hospital has virtually eliminated transcription errors through its 100% use of computerized physician order entry. Clinical pathways and standard order sets have reduced practice variation, providing a safer environment. CHALLENGES: Many projects focused on timeliness, such as emergency department wait time, lab turnaround time, and pneumonia time to initial antibiotic. Results have been mixed, with projects most successful when a link was established with patient outcomes, such as in reducing time to percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty for patients with acute myocardial infarction.
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ABSTRACT: Suboptimal medication use among nursing home (NH) residents is common. NH residents tend to be older, suffer from multiple conditions, and take numerous medications, increasing their risk of serious complications. This article examines pharmacotherapy in a rural, tribally owned NH. Medical records were reviewed and case studies were conducted by a team composed of a medical anthropologist, psychiatrist, and geriatrician. A rural, American Indian-owned NH in the US northern plains. 40 American Indian and 5 EuroAmerican NH residents. Minimum Data Set assessments, admission records, care plans, social histories, prescription lists, and behavioral consultation reports. Potential underuse affected almost 75% of residents; undertreatment of depressive and psychotic/agitated symptoms was especially common. Potential inappropriate use, especially of analgesics, psychotropics, and antihistamines, affected 30% of residents. A smaller, but still substantial, number of residents (21%) experienced potential overuse, much of which involved anticonvulsants, antibiotics, cardiovascular, and psychotropic agents. The prescription of 10 or more medications was significantly associated with potential drug interactions, as well as underuse, inappropriate medication use, and overuse. Psychotropic medications were the most potentially problematic medication category, and were strongly implicated in potential underuse, inappropriate use, and overuse. Fewer medications; the discontinuation of drugs known to be potentially problematic for NH residents; modification of psychotropic medication regimens; use of cognitive-enhancing medications where appropriate; implementation of an electronic medical record system; and greater use of nonpharmacological behavioral interventions may have substantially improved residents' treatment regimens.Journal of the American Medical Directors Association 02/2007; 8(1):1-7. DOI:10.1016/j.jamda.2006.03.010 · 4.78 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Health information technology (HIT) consists of technological advancements in health care instrumentation, integration, and documentation. It is now beginning to reach a level of consistency, and its benefits are being realized in clinical practice. Comparisons between paper and digital documentation have been conducted in various specialties. There have also been studies comparing manual and automated documentation. Our study was designed to compare the overall benefit of an electronic health record (EHR) and clinical automation accompanied with HIT advancements to traditional modes of practice within the Optometry Clinic at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. All processes and procedures used in the study were equivalent to those used in patient visits common to most optometric practices. They included patient check-in, pretesting by an ophthalmic technician, and a comprehensive eye examination by an optometrist. In addition to the quantitative time measurements for these procedures, the frequency of certain events was recorded to ascertain the value of automation versus conventional methods of patient management, testing, treatment, and documentation. Although no process time showed any statistically significant difference, some trends were evident. There was a trend toward increased efficiency in the automated group during "Doctor Examination" and "Total Time" subsections. Also, there was a trend toward decreased efficiency with the automated group during the "Check-In" section. Automation and EHR technology will likely improve over time and surpass the medical efficiency of conventional modes of care. It is impressive that the early stage of HIT used in this study showed no detraction from clinical efficiency while potentially offering many patient, provider, and administrative benefits.Optometry - Journal of the American Optometric Association 02/2008; 79(1):43-9. DOI:10.1016/j.optm.2007.06.013 · 1.34 Impact Factor