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Boletín médico del Hospital Infantil de México

versión impresa ISSN 1665-1146


LAVALLE-VILLALOBOS, Antonio et al. Impact of an educational intervention on medical prescribing errors. Bol. Med. Hosp. Infant. Mex. [online]. 2007, vol.64, n.2, pp.83-90. ISSN 1665-1146.

Introduction. A medical error is the failure of a planned action to be completed as intended or the use of a wrong plan to achieve an aim; it can generate extra costs for the hospital or the patient including permanent disability or death. Objective: To determine frequency and causes of error in medication. Predicated on the results of the first objective, the second objective, was to diminish prescribing errors by 50%, after applying the educational intervention which stressed preventive measures. Material and methods. The study was carried out in 2 parts; the first part consisted of a retrospective study reviewing the records of hospitalized patients in different pediatrics services during a 2 months period. We quantified the percentage of errors in medication, type of error, drugs, day of the week, schedule, and administration way. Preventive measures were introduced and a second study was carried out in order to determine the impact of the educational intervention on the medical errors. We used descriptive statistics, chi square test and Student t. Results. In the first part of the study we reviewed 232 charts; we identified prescription errors in 57.3% of the patient records. The total number of errors was 397, or 2.9 errors per chart. In the follow up study we reviewed 226 charts and detected prescription errors in only 17.6% of the charts. A total of 111 or 1.5 per chart. The decrease total errors 71% (P < 0.05), but the decrease per chart was only a 3.5%. Conclusion. The number of prescription errors identified in this study was inordinately high. Not surprisingly, the educational intervention which stressed preventive measures had a significant impact inreducing prescription errors during the period of study, stressing the need for continuous chart review to comply with quality assurance, and ensure patient safety.

Palabras llave : Medical error; error in medication; medical care; patient safety.

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