Implementation of Telepharmacy in Rural Hospitals: Potential for Improving Medication Safety

Research center:
Lead researcher:
Project funded:
September 2006
Project completed:
August 2008
The purpose of this project is to describe successful telepharmacy activities and to analyze policy issues related to the implementation of telepharmacy projects in rural hospitals. These policy issues include the potential impact of telepharmacy use on the quality of pharmaceutical services and medication safety for rural patients.

The data for this project will be collected through an e-mail survey of the 50 SORHs; phone surveys of representatives of SORHs, state hospital associations and/or state pharmacy boards in several key states; and phone surveys of CEOs and/or Pharmacy Directors in rural hospitals in those states. Interview questions will be designed to gather data to address research questions regarding rural hospitals' relationships with telepharmacy hospital partners; funding, including Medicare reimbursement for telepharmacy activities; evaluations of the impact of telepharmacy activities on medication safety; and pharmacists' participation in rural hospitals' quality improvement and patient safety activities related to medication use.