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Decision Support Systems and Their Effect on Decreasing Medication Errors and Protecting the Patient Safety

This study intended to explore the development of health information technology and its effect on decreasing the medication errors and protecting the patient's safety. This study which was descriptivecomparative in nature has been conducted in 2013 in order to examine the development process of technology in the healthcare system and its advantages for decreasing the medication errors and maintaining the patient safety. The data were gathered by using different informational resources such as valid articles, books, magazines and web sites. To compare and analyze different technology systems in terms of developing and improving medical services delivered by the respective providers, the varied strategies in use in the selected countries were gathered by studying a large number of articles extracted from numerous scientific magazines and resources so that an appropriate strategy may be proposed for the healthcare system of Iran. As the findings of the study indicated, some information technologies including CPOE, Bar code, AMDS, PDA, etc improved the medication safety decreasing the rate of medication errors remarkably. The obtained rates for such improvement in terms of the type of the error were as follows: 75.47% for prescription errors, 70.34% for the errors due to the prescribed medications listed for the patient use, 87.41% for administration time errors, 93.48% for the errors resulting from the patient's mistakes. Accordingly, to ensure the high performance of the informational systems, due attention must be paid to their infrastructures. Furthermore, besides strengthening the previous infrastructures, it is necessary to create new ones so as to guarantee the usability of such systems for the hospitals.

Author(s): Razieh Mirzaeian, Mahboobeh Habibi, Sakineh Saghaeiannejad-Isfahani, Maryam Esmaeli-Ghium Abadiand Javad Sharifi Rad

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