Factors Affecting the Accuracy of the Active Medication List: Information for Health Care Managers

Thumbnail Image
Boncella, Carol
Wenying, Sun
Boncella, Robert J.
Washburn University. School of Business
Kaw Valley Bank
Issue Date
October 2014
Alternative Title
Background: The Active Medication List (AML), part of the electronic health record (EHR), lists a patient's current medications. Its accuracy and completeness may be affected by clinicians gathering information (List Taker) and the informants consulted (List Source). Computer screens (User Interface) and external databases (Systems Connectivity) are also employed. Purpose: This research sought to determine the influence of human and information technology factors on AML accuracy. Methodology/Approach: We surveyed clinicians working on inpatient units and emergency departments of three Midwest hospitals. Findings: Results suggest human factors more significantly affect AML accuracy than information technology factors. Universal support exists for the pharmacist as the best list taker and the patient as the primary list source. Of IT factors, only user interface design is important. Practice implications: We suggest that hospitals use pharmacists to collect AML data and take creative steps to increase the reliability of the patient as a list source.