Improvement of patient safety through implementation of electronic medical records
Introduction: Today, with the complexity of the process of conducting activities, the increase in diversity and the number of hospital services, and the increase in the expectations of clients - consistent with the fast technological advances - most of the hospitals in Iran have turned to mechanized systems to organize their daily activities and to register the patients' information and the care provided. One of these technologies is electronic medical records, which is known as a valuable system to evaluate patients' information in hospitals. The purpose of this paper was to examine the advantages of running electronic medical records in patient safety.
Methods: This study is a review paper based on a structured review of papers published in the Google Scholar, SID, Magiran, Pubmed, and Science Direct databases (from 2007 to 2015) and the books on the benefits of implementing electronic medical records in patient safety and the related keywords.
Results: Clinical information systems can have a significant effect on the quality of the outputs and patient safety. Various studies have indicated that the physicians with access to clinical guidelines and features such as computer reminders, doctors who did not have these features, presented more appropriate preventive care. Studies show that electronic medical records play a crucial role in improving the quality of patient health and safety services. Moreover, electronic medical record system is usually in connection with other technological tools: electronic drug management records,
electronic record of time and date of drug management are usually associated with bar code technology. Among the benefits of this system is the possibility to record clinical care by the treatment team, which would be especially beneficial for patient's bedside record. If the treatment personnel forgets to ask the patient a particular question, system reminds him/her. Furthermore, electronic medical record is able to remind the nurses of the patient's allergic reactions and medical history without the need for the patient to remind, which improves patient safety.
Conclusion: Implementation of electronic medical records boosts up the quality of health services, patient safety, people's access to health care services, and the speed of patients treatment, leading to lower healthcare costs. Thus, considering the benefits mentioned and some other benefits of this kind, one can use this technology in clinical care provided to patients to come up with a safe and effective clinical care.
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