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EHRs can boost safety if effective workflow is used


By Sabriya Rice
Posted: February 25, 2014 - 11:00 am ET
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Hospitals implementing electronic health records can improve patient safety with effective workflow, according to a presentation at the 2014 Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society conference in Orlando, Fla.

Simple strategies that protect patients include designing rooms so physicians can face their patients and share their screens with patients while inputting information and minimizing redundant data entry by re-evaluating copy and paste features, said Emily Patterson, assistant professor for Ohio State University's School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences in the College of Medicine.

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Safety efforts can also be enhanced by considering EHR technologies with certain capabilities, Patterson said. The federal Safety Assurance Factors for EHR Resiliency guides enable healthcare organizations to address EHR questions, including how to determine what system interfaces and configurations to use.

Health IT vendors, she said, should improve patient portals and incorporate lab results and annotated images within the information patients can access.

Follow Sabriya Rice on Twitter: @MHsrice



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