Kaiser Permanente’s Computerized Pharmacy Alert System Increases Medication Safety for Elderly Patients

When an elderly patient is prescribed a potentially inappropriate medication, Kaiser Permanente Colorado’s computerized alert system notifies the pharmacist who contacts the prescribing physician to review the order. This system reduced the risk of dispensing potentially inappropriate medication by 16 percent among their elderly patients.


Excerpted from Commonwealth Fund case study:

Kaiser Permanente: Bridging the Quality Divide with Integrated Practice, Group Accountability, and Health Information Technology
http://www.commonwealthfund.org/Content/Publications/Case-Studies/2009/Jun/Kaiser-Permanente.aspx

“The Colorado region developed a computerized pharmacy alert system that reduced the relative risk of dispensing potentially inappropriate medication by 16 percent among elderly patients. When an elderly patient is prescribed a potentially inappropriate medication, the system notifies a pharmacist, who contacts the physician by phone or e-mail to review the order using a standard questionnaire and to recommend changes when warranted. For patients taking anticoagulation medication, a telephonic, clinical pharmacist–managed anticoagulation service reduced the risk of therapy-related complications by 39 percent compared with usual care.”

Keywords: care coordination, care team, communication, Colorado, computerized pharmacy alert system, electronic medical record, health information technology, health care quality, KP Healthconnect, Kaiser Permanente, medication management, integrated care, safety, treatment

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Jean Sud
Senior Manager, Public Policy & Communications
Kaiser Permanente, The Permanente Federation
1 Kaiser Plaza
Oakland, CA 94612
tel. 510.271.6317
Jean.L.Sud@kp.org
www.kaiserpermanente.org

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