Old drug remains active on EHR
One common problem electronic health records (EHRs) is that lists and medication lists are not updated, says Bill Fera, MD, principal with the Ernst & Young Americas Advisory Health Care Sector in Pittsburgh, PA.
Temporary medications or diagnoses can linger if users do not update appropriately.
Fera recalls an incident when his wife was being prepared for surgery. A preop nurse asked if she was still on Lovenox, a potent blood thinner taken as a shot used primarily after orthopedic procedures for a short time to prevent blood clots. She replied that she had not been on Lovenox for two years. She had been asked about the drug before and had always replied that she no longer uses it, but the Lovenox persists in her record as an "active medication."
"The same thing can happen with temporary diagnoses as benign as sinusitis to those that are more impactful like acute renal failure," Fera says. "Users of the system have to be sure that information is up to date and that old or inaccurate information does not persist."
• Bill Fera, MD, Principal, Ernst & Young Americas Advisory Health Care Sector, Pittsburgh, PA. Telephone: (412) 644-0551. Email: email@example.com.