Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2503702
 


 



Saving Patient Ryan — Can Advanced Electronic Medical Records Make Patient Care Safer?


Muhammad Zia Hydari


Carnegie Mellon University - David A. Tepper School of Business

Rahul Telang


Carnegie Mellon University - H. John Heinz III School of Public Policy and Management

William M Marella


Patient Safety Authority; ECRI Institute

September 30, 2014


Abstract:     
Patient safety is one of the foremost problems in US healthcare, affecting hundreds of thousands of patients and costing tens of billions of dollars every year. Advanced electronic medical records (EMRs) are widely expected to improve patient safety, but the evidence of advanced EMRs' impact on patient safety is inconclusive. A key challenge to evaluating EMRs' impact on safety has been the lack of reliable and comprehensive data. We overcome this challenge by constructing a panel of Pennsylvania hospitals over 2005-2012 using data from several sources. In particular, we source confidential patient safety data from the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority (PSA). Since mid-2004, Pennsylvania state law has mandated that hospitals report a broad range of patient safety events to the PSA. Using a differences-in-differences identification strategy, we find that advanced EMRs lead to a 27 percent decline in patient safety events. This overall decline is driven by declines in several important subcategories — 30 percent decline in events due to medication errors and 25 percent decline in events due to complications. Our results hold against a number of robustness checks, including, but not limited to, falsification test with non-clinical IT and falsification test with a subcategory of events that is not expected to benefit from advanced EMRs. Overall, we provide evidence to policy makers, hospital administrators, and other stakeholders that hospitals' adoption of advanced EMRs improves patient safety.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 40

Keywords: electronic medical records, health information technology, patient safety


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Date posted: October 3, 2014  

Suggested Citation

Hydari, Muhammad Zia and Telang, Rahul and Marella, William M, Saving Patient Ryan — Can Advanced Electronic Medical Records Make Patient Care Safer? (September 30, 2014). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2503702 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2503702

Contact Information

Muhammad Zia Hydari (Contact Author)
Carnegie Mellon University - David A. Tepper School of Business ( email )
5000 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3890
United States

Rahul Telang
Carnegie Mellon University - H. John Heinz III School of Public Policy and Management ( email )
4800 Forbes Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3890
United States
412-268-1155 (Phone)
William M Marella
Patient Safety Authority ( email )
333 Market Street
Lobby Level
Harrisburg, PA 17120
United States
ECRI Institute ( email )
5200 Butler Pike
Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462
United States
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