To determine the effect of introducing an electronic medication management system (EMMS) on deprescribing practice in a post-acute hospital setting.
This study used a before-after study design.
Setting and Participants
This study examined the admission and discharge medications prescribed to patients admitted to an Australian post-acute hospital before and after the introduction of an EMMS.
Data were collected over a 1-month period before and after the introduction of an EMMS and included summary measures of drug burden including Potentially Inappropriate Medications and the Drug Burden Index. We calculated and compared admission and discharge medication prescription as well as change in medication use before and after the introduction of an EMMS.
Medication prescription data were available for 121 people before and 107 people after EMMS introduction. In both phases, when compared with admission, those discharged were prescribed fewer medications (mean reduction pre-EMMS = 2.9, P < .001, post-EMMS = 2.6, P < .001), fewer Potentially Inappropriate Medications (mean reduction pre-EMMS = 0.4, P < .001, post-EMMS = 0.6, P < .001) and had lower Drug Burden Index (mean reduction pre-EMMS = 0.1, P < .001, post-EMMS = 0.2, P < .001). The degree of reduction in each measure was similar before and after EMMS introduction.
Conclusions and Implications
The introduction of an EMMS did not affect deprescribing practice in a post-acute hospital setting. Future work is required to explore the potential for clinical decision support within an EMMS to further improve the safety and effectiveness of deprescribing within post-acute care.
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Published online: November 21, 2020
The authors declare no conflicts of interest.
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