According to a recent study, an EHR (Electronic Health Report) extension which defines when a patient may benefit from preventive therapy may be more effective than prescribing based only on education. Researchers at Philadelphia-based University of Pennsylvania Health System evaluated interventions that utilized both education and an electronic dashboard system integrated with patients’ EHRs to find out whether cardiac patients would benefit from acid suppression therapy that diminishes the risk of gastrointestinal bleeding. The electronic system takes information from patients’ EHRs to alert physicians when an individual would likely benefit from the therapy.
However, researchers found that adding the dashboard technology to EHRs resulted in an 18 percent increase in essential medication orders. Moreover, results also manifested that education on acid suppression therapy did not present a noticeable effect on prescribing rates. Earlier to deploying the EHR-linked dashboard, from September 2016 to January 2017, prescription rates for Penn Medicine Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CICU) patients requiring acid suppression therapy were 73 percent. Later the installation of the dashboard, prescription rates for CICU patients spiked to 86 percent, from January 2017 to September 2017.
Ahead of this finding, Penn Medicine CIO and lead study senior author Shivan Mehta said in a statement that this study shows that education alone is typically not a sufficient method for changing the behavior of providers and care teams. He further added that his team demonstrated that although clinical leaders should collaborate to identify best practices, care redesign, technology, and behavior change strategies are also needed.