6 E-Prescribe Features That Improve Client Safety

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With the increasing popularity of e-prescribe tools, healthcare providers often overlook the integrated e-prescribe module in their EHR. However, it’s important to note that not all e-prescribe systems are created equal. In this blog post, we’ll highlight 6 features that can improve patient safety in accordance with SAFER Guides published by ONC. While striking a balance between client safety and productivity may present a challenge, some functionalities within your E-Prescribe software are crucial for improving client safety.

1.     Client Identification During Bulk Approval

E-prescribing, including for controlled substances, plays a vital role in the workflow of providers. That’s why many EHRs offer convenient options for bulk medication renewals and changes, allowing those authorizing the changes to accomplish more in less time. Yet, “bulk prescribing”, where providers are presented with a queue of prescribing tasks and simply “check the box” to prescribe medication, presents potential risks to client safety. It is crucial to remember that the wrong medication or dosage can have devastating consequences for clients.

To ensure client safety, we highly recommend that your e-prescribing tool require essential interactions (Drug:Drug, Drug:Allergy, Drug:Condition, Drug:Age) to be performed, along with checks on dose limitations and duplicate medications, before transmitting the prescription every time. This critical step helps providers verify that clients are not being exposed to harmful prescriptions by ensuring that the most up-to-date clinical information is being checked before the prescription is transmitted.

How Does this Improve Client Safety?

Ensuring accurate patient identification, allowing for a thorough review of one patient’s clinical information at a time, and conducting appropriate checks for drug interactions and dosing before prescribing enhances patient safety by minimizing the risk of medication errors

2.     Limit Record Display to One Client

It’s no secret that healthcare professionals never have enough time in the day for all their tasks. Given the common occurrence of distractions while working in your EHR, it’s essential to limit access to one patient record at a time. Doing so significantly reduces the chances of reviewing and entering information on the wrong patient record, especially when multiple records are open simultaneously.

How Does this Improve Client Safety?

By implementing this measure, we prioritize patient safety by ensuring accurate clinical information is documented and reviewed, which minimizes the risk of medication errors. This also reduces confusion for users and helps them stay focused on the task at hand. For optimal client safety, your EHR-e-prescribe integration should restrict users to displaying only one patient/client record on the same computer at any given time.

3.     E-Prescribe Only Available Within Your EHR

To enhance patient safety and enable effective clinical decisions, it is crucial that integrated e-prescribe tools are exclusively used within your her, rather than via a separate app. This guarantees that clinicians have immediate access to the client’s complete clinical history, including diagnoses, assessments, lab results, progress notes, and more. Moreover, it ensures that providers use the e-prescribe software to conduct vital drug interactions, check dosage limitations, and prevent duplicate prescriptions.

How Does this Improve Client Safety?

By following this process, you can minimize the risk of medication errors, make accurate patient identifications, review one patient’s information at a time, and perform essential drug interaction and dosing checks before prescribing medication. It also boosts productivity by offering users everything they need in one place without having to balance multiple software and tabs. Critically, it ensures consistency in medication records in both the EHR and the e-prescribing software.

4. Update Allergies and Reactions in Your EHR Only

When updating your clients’ allergies and reactions, it is essential to make these updates exclusively in your EHR system. By doing so, the EHR platform is the sole repository for allergy and reaction data, and it will seamlessly sync with your integrated e-prescribe platform. 

Without this, accessing multiple client information becomes a challenge, leaving no means to verify that allergy information is accurate and up-to-date and potentially putting the client at risk. Having a sole repository for allergy and reaction data is critical for effective drug-allergy checking, particularly when it comes to essential interactions between medications and allergies.

How Does this Improve Client Safety?

This approach significantly enhances patient safety by minimizing the likelihood of medication errors and preventable adverse drug events related to allergens or other reactions.

5. Diagnosis Code Updates Your EHR Only

Similar to allergens and reactions, it is essential that your EHR enforces the requirement for diagnosis codes to be exclusively entered or updated within the system and then synchronized into your e-prescribe platform. This ensures that there is a single, reliable source of truth for diagnosis data, enabling effective drug-condition checking for crucial interactions between medications and specific conditions.

How Does this Improve Client Safety?

By doing so, we significantly enhance patient safety by minimizing the risk of medication errors and preventable adverse drug events associated with selected conditions.

6. Use Structured Sigs

To enhance patient safety and minimize the risk of errors, it is essential to minimize the use of free text data in order entry and instead enter prescription orders in a standardized form. This standardized format not only facilitates effective clinical decision support but also allows for crucial interactions and checks on dose limitations, duplicate medications, and potential drug interactions before transmitting the prescription. This can also facilitate effective and efficient transmission to the pharmacy, since it reduces back and forth with the pharmacy on strength, route, frequency, or directions.

How Does this Improve Client Safety?

By implementing this approach, we can ensure that patients receive the appropriate medication with minimal delays at the pharmacy, with reduced risks, and benefit from additional clinical decision support tailored to their needs. NewCrop relies on structured sigs as a standardized mode of communication for prescription-related information.

Client safety and productivity no longer need to be in conflict when it comes to electronically prescribing medications. By leveraging an EHR and integrated e-prescribe platform with these advanced features, you can effortlessly prioritize client safety within your workflow.

Discover how EchoVantage can optimize your workflow beyond just e-prescribing. Why not schedule a demo today to explore the many benefits we can offer you?

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