Medication Error Rates Examined for Electronic Drug Administration App

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Decline in rate of medication errors in medication administration recording post-app implementation
Decline in rate of medication errors in medication administration recording post-app implementation

HealthDay News — Use of an electronic medication administration record (eMAR) application can reduce the rate of medication errors in medication administration recording (ME-MAR), according to a study published online April 18 in the Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice.

Noelia Vicente Oliveros, PharmD, from the Hospital Universitario Ramón y Cajal in Madrid, and colleagues conducted a before and after quasi-experimental study in a university hospital that implemented the eMAR application in March 2014. Data were obtained in April 2012 and June 2014, pre- and post-implementation. 

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A total of 2,835 pre- and 2,621 post-implementation medication administration records were analyzed. The researchers observed a decrease in the rate of ME-MAR overall, from 48.0 to 36.9% (P<0.05). In both phases, the same types of ME-MAR were observed, except for "MAR with incomplete information," which was not seen in the post-implementation phase. The most frequent ME-MAR in both phases was "MAR at the wrong time" (before or after medication administration: 31.6 versus 30.2%). In both phases, the main cause of ME-MARs was the failure to follow work procedures. After implementation of eMAR, the potential future risk of ME-MARs decreased significantly (P<0.05).

"Use of the eMAR application significantly reduces the rate of ME-MAR and their potential risk," the authors write.

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