Access to a computerised prescription-verifying programme: impact on pharmacist interventions in dispensing unit

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Abstract

Objective

We aimed to evaluate the effect of a newly implemented computerised prescription verifying programme (CPVP) embedded in a pharmacy information system on pharmacists’ interventions pertaining to inpatient prescriptions.

Methods

Pharmacist intervention records pre and post CPVP implementation in a 1600-bed tertiary academic hospital in South Korea were reviewed. Pharmacists were divided into two groups: dispensing pharmacists pre CPVP implementation and semi-ward pharmacists using the CPVP. We characterised and compared the reason for intervention, the type of intervention and the significance of error that was prevented by the two groups of pharmacists.

Results

The patterns regarding the reason for and the type of intervention were altered post CPVP implementation. The proportion of intervention type with respect to dosage adjustment (24.8% vs 16.4%), correction of duplicated orders (24.3% vs 5.6%) and the recommendation of therapeutic drug monitoring (3.4% vs 0.0%) significantly increased post CPVP implementation (all p<0.001). Regarding the significance of the errors, the proportion of type 2 errors (that could have resulted in significant morbidity or mortality if not prevented) was higher in interventions by semi-ward pharmacists than those undertaken by dispensing pharmacists (37% vs 28%).

Conclusions

Prescription quality can be improved via increased participation of pharmacists in patient care with more accessible patient information. Given the current circumstances, the implementation of the CPVP can be a stepping stone to extensive clinical pharmacy service in hospitals.

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