Scanning Medications at the Emergency Department

Topic: Pharmacology
Words: 1112 Pages: 4


EpicCare refers to an electronic medical record (EMR) solution accredited for Meaningful Use Stages 1 and 2 by Epic Organizations for big healthcare and hospital systems. An in-house team created, installed, and maintains EpicCare. Dashboards that integrate and show financial and clinical indicators and configurable themes are among the modules. As part of the Meaningful Use Stage 2 criteria, EpicCare additionally offers e-prescribing and patient portal capabilities (Aseem et al., 2020). The application also includes tablet and mobile features and telemedicine tools that allow physicians to speak with patients through video platforms. In general, an electronic medical records system protects patients by assisting doctors in avoiding drug mistakes. The Epic system enables physicians from within a hospital setting to access data from the same central database or same computer. When doctors prescribe drugs, that database serves as part of a comprehensive “checks and balances” system. Research problem statement: In the emergency department, there should be routine scanning of medications using EPIC EMR prior to administration to reduce the number of medication errors.

Research questions in PICO format

Intervention Comparison Outcome
This research involves all patients within the Emergency department System alert when the wrong medication is administered to a patient.
The system also calculates dosages as per the age and weight of the pediatric patients.
Epic EMR also reminds physicians of the best practices that are recommended for certain types of diagnoses.
Before the introduction of this scanning system, prescriptions of medications were made manually by using non-EPIC charting. With the high number of patients, this process was slow and prone to errors. Improve patient care in all areas, including patient-centeredness, safety, timeliness, efficacy, education, communication, equity, and efficiency.
Scanning of medications using the Epic EMR procedure is a great step in avoiding medication errors within the emergency department (ED)

Literature Review and Outcomes

Safe drug administration is essential for providing high-quality healthcare. The specific objective is to reduce pharmaceutical mistakes in the healthcare context, with a focus on the emergency room (ER). EMRs (electronic medical records) are increasingly becoming popular in medical settings (Vaidotas et al., 2019). Every medical system, as well as its divisions and services, has user interfaces that are tailored to their individual requirements. It has also used computer-linked automated medicine dispensing equipment with a triple scan system. The scan system electronically scans the band code unique identification of the patient, the medication bar code, and the Identification badge of the nurse to ensure that medication is provided to the proper patient (Vaidotas et al., 2019). The Epic EMR offers a unique Emergency Department interface (ED). The following characteristics distinguish the ED patient care workflow: the patients in the ED do not stay for so long, and most of the patients who come to the ED are usually new patients representing novel problems. Additionally, some of the patients are usually discharged to home base care while others are hospitalized. A given room within the ED is usually preserved for rapid turnover. Lastly, nurses and physicians in the ED do manage several patients simultaneously.

Because of these issues, clinicians handling patients in the ED cannot get to know clients by name. The majority of the time spent with the patient is spent gathering information about their physical exam results and medical history and performing therapeutic and diagnostic procedures. Due to time constraints in the emergency room, medical knowledge takes precedence over getting to know patients socially and socially. As a result, ED clinical personnel routinely use the patient’s room number to accurately identify individuals. In the identification section of the patient’s file, nevertheless, the patient’s name is clearly shown.

Electronic Medical Records technology can help prevent medical errors by flagging potential pharmaceutical combinations and adverse reactions. There are some major aspects that have a role in the majority of pharmaceutical prescription mistakes: A number of features included in current electronic medical records systems can sound an alert if there are any drug or prescription combinations, as well as double-check for sensitivities or previous documentation of harmful drug reactions. Health professionals and other medical team personnel may utilize the EMR database to quickly research any drug, as well as its negative consequences and precautions. Formularies for approved and standardized doses and delivery of certain pharmaceuticals are frequently provided by such systems. Prescriptions are written for medications that interact with other treatments. Foods that a patient can consume while taking a certain medication Administration of a drug to a patient who is allergic to the substance or has had a severe reaction to it. Failure to notice and assess possibly harmful side effects depending on the medical history of a given patient and Wrong dosage frequency recommendations.

As electronic medical records (EMR) grow more common, human factors concepts must be applied to improve the usability and efficiency of these systems and, as a result, minimize bad outcomes for patients caused by EMR user mistakes. A study was done by Lawton, Ingraham & Blickensderfer (2021) on “Best Practices for Reducing Interface Errors in Electronic Medical Records”, The authors have described five significant features found in electronic medical records that distinguish contemporary records from conventional ones. The practices include Information Control and Management, interface modifier, Hybrid Systems, the Methodology of Cross-Checking, and Watermarking. With their unique approaches and applications, these practices jointly function to limit potential medication errors.

Patient identification is an important aspect of providing safe medical services. Errors in test documentation and orders have grown more prevalent as hospitals rely more on electronic medical records (EMRs). Providing a means for clinicians to recognize a client, including an image of the patient in the electronic medical records, has significantly reduced mistake rates and enhanced healthcare delivery. To decrease the frequency of incorrect patient prescriptions, the authors used a photographic picture of the patient in all entry screens of the orders (Aseem et al., 2020). It takes time to obtain a visual image, and it must be matched to the proper patient. While this may be viable for hospitalized patients, it may not be viable for an emergency department’s quicker patient throughput and process. The room number watermark takes up no more screen space on the virtual machine and may be done automatically without user interaction.

Vaidotas et al. (2019) also provide supportive evidence for the importance of the EPIC EMR. The authors, in their comparison research on the comparison of medical errors in two emergency departments (ED) to two emergency departments that relied on handwritten medical records (the conventional medical records), found that medication mistakes were reduced in emergency departments that used electronic medical records, contributing to a continuous improvement in the safety of the patient.


Aseem, S., Ratrout, B. M., Litin, S. C., Ganesh, R., Croghan, I. T., Salerno, M. S., Majka, A. J., Chutka, D. S., Hurt, R. T., Abu Lebdeh, H. S., Vincent, A., & Nanda, S. (2020). A Process of Acceptance of Patient Photographs in Electronic Medical Records to Confirm Patient Identification. Mayo Clinic proceedings. Innovations, quality & outcomes, 4(1). Web.

Lawton, P., Ingraham, J., & Blickensderfer, B. (2021). Best Practices for Reducing Interface Errors in Electronic Medical Records. Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting, 65(1). Web.

Vaidotas, M., Yokota, P. K. O., Negrini, N. M. M., Leiderman, D. B. D., Souza, V. P. D., Santos, O. F. P. D., & Wolosker, N. (2019). Medication errors in emergency departments: is electronic medical record an effective barrier? Einstein (São Paulo). Web.

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