Yeaman said the technology is a big win for patient safety.
“The statistics nationally say that will cut down somewhere between 60 and 70 percent of ordering errors and cut down on 80 percent of administration errors,” he said.
Electronic recording also allows for ease of health information exchange. For the last five years, Yeaman said Norman Regional has been participating in an exchange program that allows patients more readily available access to records from other hospitals or physicians outside of the Norman network.
Yeaman said the exchange program proves critical in emergency situations when a patient might be unconscious and allows physicians to more easily determine a patient’s pre-existing conditions, medications or their baseline health.
Norman Regional is working on expanding their network of information, Yeaman said.
With so much recorded electronically, Yeaman said hospitals are now able to hold records more accurately for a longer period of time.
“Now in the electronic world we have backup tapes, and we can keep things for a very long time,” he said.
Yeaman said the shift from paper to electronic records is not always easy but has proven to have many benefits.
“It’s a challenge for health care to change to an electronic culture, but with some of those challenges, we’re changing the way we’re doing things, and we get a lot of wins for patients and a lot of wins for patient safety.”
Patient Safety Awareness Week is an annual education and awareness campaign for health care safety led by National Patient Safety Foundation.
For more information on Patient Safety Awareness Week, visit www.npsf.org.