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Morning Headlines 12/13/12

December 12, 2012 Headlines 2 Comments

Mediware Buys MediServe to Continue Expansion

Mediware Information Systems announces the acquisition of MediServe, a Chandler, Arizona-based provider of electronic documentation solutions for inpatient and acute care rehabilitation.

Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority Studies Electronic Health Records’ (EHR) Safety

Pennsylvania’s Patient Safety Authority reviews 3,099 EHR-related events and determines that 89 percent resulted in no harm, 10 percent resulted in an unsafe condition but did not result in harm, and fifteen individual events resulted in actual patient harm.

Maine tops states for provider rate of EHRs, meaningful use

National Health IT coordinator Farzad Mostashari, MD, commends Maine, Kentucky and Ohio for having the most accelerated adoption of EHR rates in the nation during ONC’s annual meeting.

Cerner Announces Share Repurchase Program

Cerner approves a buyback of $170 million of its common stock, representing 1.2 percent of the company’s outstanding shares, as it closes out a year in which its stock is up more than 29 percent.

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2 Responses to “Morning Headlines 12/13/12”

  1. 1
    Pradba Gupta, MD Says:

    Well, you know then but, the patient safety authorities in the state of Pennsylvania reporting above does no report harm because the hospitals do not report all the harmful problems to the safety authorites.

    My golly gosh, if the hospitals report to these authorities, then, well you know then but, they must send letters with reports to patients, somethings that hospitals leaders do not want to do. Lawyers and more lawyers. Many more important, these authorities do not take complaints from patients’ families and families whose had loved ones injured do not get letter showing that hospital did not report.

    Thus, well you know then but, in very grande conclusion, these reports from these safety authorities is, how do they say, the tip of the iceberg of very many harms to patients from not just EHR but other things.

  2. 2
    S Silverstein MD Says:

    Re: Patient Safety Authority Paper

    The report is welcome.

    The most important part of the paper, I point out, is the “Limitations” section. FDA, IOM and others have made similar observations – we don’t know the true magnitude of the problem due to systematic limitations of the available data.

    Therefore, at best what is available must be deemed as risk management-relevant case reports, a “red flag” that could represent (using the words of FDA CDRH director Jeffrey Shuren regading HIT safety), the tip of the iceberg.

    It is imperative far more work be done in post-market surveillance as this technology is deployed nationally and internationally.

    An additional factor that also contributes to lack of knowledge of EHR-related adverse events is hospital reporting non-compliance. For instance, I know of cases from my own work and personal experience that I would have expected to appear in the database, but apparently do not.

    But don’t take it from me alone. Here is PPSA Authority Board Member Cliff Reiders, Esq. on this.

    From “Hospitals Are Not Reporting Errors as Required by Law, Phila. Inquirer”, pg. 4,
    http://articles.philly.com/2008-09-12/news/24991423_1_report-medical-mistakes-new-jersey-hospital-association-medication-safety :

    Hospitals don’t report serious events if patients have been warned of the possibility of them in consent forms, said Clifford Rieders, a trial lawyer and member of the Patient Safety Authority’s board.

    He said he thought one reason many hospitals don’t want to report serious events is that the law also requires that patients be informed in writing within a week of such problems. So, if a hospital doesn’t report a problem, it doesn’t have to send the patient that letter.

    Rieders says the agency has allowed hospitals to determine for themselves what constitutes a serious event and the agency has failed to come up with a solid definition in six years.

    Fixing this “is not a priority,” he added.

    This coincides with my own personal experience precisely.

    I suspect the true rates of EHR-related close calls, reversible injuries, permanent injuries and deaths is significantly higer than the limited data available suggests. That data is merely a red flag that much more stringent reporting requirements and enforcement are needed.

    My report making that type of recommendation to the Patient Safety Authority, from a presentation I gave in July 2012 at their invitation, is at http://www.ischool.drexel.edu/faculty/ssilverstein/PA_patient_safety_Jul2012.ppt

    (Disclosure: I was an invited reviewer of the just-released report.)

    S. Silverstein, MD

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