Quick Hit – “I don’t see the icon”

Several times on this blog I have discussed the need to advance pharmacy through the use of new and exciting technologies. Yesterday I experienced something that brings light to the reason pharmacy practice is still in the Stone Age, where it may live forever. We had a minor pharmacy system upgrade yesterday. The system was … Read more

Pharmacist perception of Wikipedia as a drug information resource

The Annals of Pharmacotherpy (Vol. 43, No. 11, pp. 1912-1913): “Approximately 80% of pharmacists use the Internet to obtain drug information.1 Wikipedia, often found at the top of Internet search results, is a free-access, collaborative, online encyclopedia that can be edited by anyone.2 Incidents of vandalism have occurred, since the site allows anyone to contribute. … Read more

Dealing with the shortcomings of healthcare information systems

This week has kept me busy dealing with issues surrounding our various clinical systems and how they fit, or don’t fit, into various processes. If you’ve been reading this blog then you are probably a little too familiar with one of the problems; the dreaded allergy issues which I’ve discussed here and here. The issue … Read more

Why my Firefox browser is more advanced than our hospital’s HIS

frustration.cartoonEach day I roll into work ready for another exciting day of pharmacy technology. I’m usually bright-eyed and ready for a new challenge because I’ve spent the previous night scouring the web and reading about all the incredible technology being put into place all over the world; tablet pcs, electronic paper and ink, advanced nanoparticles, automated dispensing devices, mobile phones, advances in social networking, and so on ad infinitum. Then there are days like today when I have something land in my lap that just makes me shake my head and wonder if healthcare will ever catch up to the rest of the world.

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For those that need a reason to support CPOE and EMR implementation

Pharmacists see hand written orders like the one below almost daily. The order has to be interpreted by a pharmacist, usually with a little hand waving and guessing (kind of like being a pharmacy Jedi), and entered on the patient’s medication profile before the nurse can access the medication from the automated dispensing cabinet and … Read more

Wikipedia as a drug reference….bad idea.

Medicine 2.0 Congress blogspot : “Readability of the Top 50 Prescribed Drugs in Wikipedia  – Devin explained that a sample of 50 most prescribed drug in United State were selected and the content related to those prescribed drugs in Wikipedia were indentified and saved as HTML files for evaluation. Each Wikipedia entry was analyzed independently … Read more

When does medication safety become counterproductive?

Being a pharmacist I’m exposed to lots of procedural changes implemented in the name of patient safety. Tall man lettering, black box warnings, pop-up warnings for allergies, drug interactions, pregnancy indicators, lactation indicators, “high risk drugs lists”, shiny labels to identify sound-alike-look-alike-drugs (SALAD), separation of stock for similarly named medications, bar coding, double checking, triple checking, and so on and so forth ad infinitum. As the “IT Pharmacist” I get to see all these changes up close and personal because I’m often involved in their implementation in one way or another. Do we actually have any evidence to support using all these things?

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