Improving Medication Safety Based on Reports in Computerized Patient Safety Systems

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Abstract

In recent years, patient safety has been a serious concern internationally. Medication in particular is a significant area in improving patient safety because medication errors are a crucial clinical problem. This study aimed to explore suggestions to improve medication safety reported via computerized patient safety systems in hospitals. The research data were retrospectively collected from the computerized patient safety incident reporting systems in one university hospital and two regional hospitals in Finland. Open-ended records concerning prescribing medicines (n = 136), dispensing medicines (n = 362), administering medicines to patients (n = 538), and documenting medication (n = 434) were included in the analysis. The data were analyzed by using inductive content analysis. Based on the study findings, there is a need to develop and standardize procedures related to all four parts of medication management process. Moreover, working environment, multiprofessional collaboration, and knowledge and skills of the professionals should be developed. Promoting medication safety in hospitals is an urgent challenge. The study results indicated that computerized patient safety incident reporting systems can provide important qualitative information to improve medication process to be safer.

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