Emergency Department EHRs 'Particularly Error Prone'

Marla Durben Hirsch | Fierce EMR | June 25, 2013

Electronic health records provide many benefits, but also bring about "unintended consequences" of errors that can affect patient safety in the emergency department, according to a new article in the Annals of Emergency Medicine.

The article, a joint effort by members of two workgroups of the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP), notes that emergency department information systems (EDIS) are an "important" and "unique" component of the movement to improve quality ad outcomes with EHRs.

However, according to the authors, the unique characteristics of emergency departments--such as the rapid turnover, frequent transitions of care, interruptions, variation in patient volume and unfamiliar patients--make these EHRs particularly error prone. [...]