Electronic prescribing in the ambulatory care setting

Added May 7, 2020

Citation: Porterfield A, Engelbert K, Coustasse A. Electronic prescribing: improving the efficiency and accuracy of prescribing in the ambulatory care setting. Perspectives in Health Information Management 2014; 11: 1g

What is this? The COVID-19 pandemic is placing a strain on healthcare systems. Existing research on strategies such as electronic prescribing in the ambulatory setting may provide information to help policy makers with this.

In this systematic review, the authors searched for research exploring the benefits of, and barriers to electronic prescribing in ambulatory care. They restricted their search to studies done in the USA and published in English between 2005 and 2013. They included 47 articles of various study types and designs.

What was found: Electronic prescribing in ambulatory care reduced prescription errors, increased efficiency in the prescription and dispensing process, improved patient outcomes, decreased patient visits and reduced costs.

Cost savings were related to improved patient adherence, reductions in adverse drug events, and reductions in prescriptions of high-cost medications (through use of generic or low-cost formulations).

Barriers to e-prescribing included the costs of installation and maintenance, lack of provider support, patient privacy, system errors and legal issues. The main barrier identified was the cost of implementation.


Disclaimer: This summary has been written by staff and volunteers of Evidence Aid in order to make the content of the original document accessible to decision makers who are searching for the available evidence on the coronavirus (COVID-19) but may not have the time, initially, to read the original report in full. This summary is not intended as a substitute for the medical advice of physicians, other health workers, professional associations, guideline developers, or national governments and international agencies. If readers of this summary think that the evidence that is presented within it is relevant to their decision-making they should refer to the content and details of the original article, and the advice and guidelines offered by other sources of expertise, before making decisions. Evidence Aid cannot be held responsible for any decisions made about the coronavirus (COVID-19) on the basis of this summary alone.