Evaluation of an Outpatient Modified Paper Prescription Form

Project completed:
February 2009
Outpatient prescribing errors are a national problem. Due to the substantial morbidity and mortality in the United States caused by outpatient medication errors, there is an urgent need for low-cost solutions. The broad goal of this proposal is to reduce outpatient prescribing errors in rural primary care practices. The specific aims of this project are to determine whether a modified paper prescription form decreases overall prescribing errors compared to a standard paper prescription form and whether a modified paper prescription form decreases omission errors compared to a standard paper prescription form. In addition, the project will ascertain prescriber satisfaction with the modified prescription form.

Rural prescribers from four states will be randomly recruited to write prescriptions on standard and modified forms. Prescription duplicates of both types will be analyzed for errors. Prescriber satisfaction with the modified form will be evaluated using surveys and focus groups.

The final product of this project is a thoroughly tested intervention that will be accessible and generalize to any rural primary care prescriber in the nation. Additionally, this project will result in presentations at national meetings and publication in peer-reviewed journals.

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