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Healthcare IT studies signal need for caution

This article was originally published in The Gray Sheet

Executive Summary

Patterns of IT use in healthcare need to be tailored to workers and their environment to be productive, according to an editorial by Robert Wears, MD, University of Florida, Jacksonville, and Marc Berg, MD, Erasmus University, Rotterdam, in the March 9 issue of JAMA. "Any IT acquisition or implementation trajectory should, first and foremost be an organizational change trajectory," they say. A JAMA study by Koppel et al. found that at one hospital a commonly used computerized, physician-order entry system "often facilitated medication error risks," despite being intended to help prevent errors. A separate review of 100 studies found that many such systems aid practitioner performance, but "effects on patient outcomes remain understudied and, when studied, inconsistent"...
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