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

31 Pages Posted: 3 Oct 2014 Last revised: 11 Nov 2016

Muhammad Zia Hydari

University of Pittsburgh, Katz Graduate 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

Date Written: August 5, 2016

Abstract

The risk of patient harm due to medical care affects hundreds of thousands of patients and costs tens of billions of dollars every year. Advanced electronic medical records (EMRs) are expected to improve patient safety, but the evidence of their impact on patient safety is inconclusive. A key challenge to evaluating advanced EMRs' impact has been the lack of reliable patient safety data. We address this issue by analyzing a new patient safety dataset from the Patient Safety Authority (PSA), a state agency that aggregates patient safety data from Pennsylvania hospitals. Using a panel dataset of Pennsylvania hospitals over 2005-2014, we identify advanced EMRs' effect using the differences-in-differences method. We find that advanced EMRs lead to a 19 percent decline in patient safety events, driven by 24 percent reduction in medication errors and 18 percent reduction in complications. Further, our analysis shows a large decline in medium severity events.

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

Suggested Citation

Hydari, Muhammad Zia and Telang, Rahul and Marella, William M, Saving Patient Ryan — Can Advanced Electronic Medical Records Make Patient Care Safer? (August 5, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2503702 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2503702

Muhammad Zia Hydari (Contact Author)

University of Pittsburgh, Katz Graduate School of Business ( email )

Roberto Clemente Drive
Pittsburgh, PA 15260
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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