Every day, the medical staff members at hospitals prescribe and administer countless medications. And as with any medical treatment, medications must be administered properly so that patients stay safe—and get better. Here at Central Florida Regional Hospital, we’ve adopted a new program to ensure that patients get the right medication every time. It’s called eMAR, short for electronic medical administration record. With eMAR, every step of medication administration is electronically tracked to ensure accuracy.
How eMAR Works
The eMAR process is simple:
1. Every patient receives a wristband that includes a unique barcode. The barcode gives relevant information about a patient’s medical history, such as drug allergies and current prescription medications.
2. The doctor writes an electronic prescription for each medication the patient should receive. It is automatically sent to the hospital pharmacy.
3. The pharmacist fills the prescription and affixes a barcode on the prescription bottle. The medication is then delivered to the staff nurse, who will administer the medication.
4. Before giving the patient each medication, the nurse scans the barcode on the prescription and on the patient’s wristband. The eMAR system alerts the nurse if the medication could interact harmfully with another medication or trigger an allergic reaction, or if the dosage isn’t correct.
5. If the medication checks out, the nurse administers the medication. If a change is necessary, she contacts the doctor for adjustments.
Benefits of eMAR
The purpose of eMAR is to prevent mistakes. With eMAR, hospitals do the following:
- Eliminate illegible prescriptions, which could result in the wrong medication or incorrect dosage being provided by the pharmacy
- Decrease the risk of potentially harmful drug interactions, particularly if different doctors are all prescribing medications
- Reduce the chances of administering a drug a patient is allergic to
- Prevent giving patients someone else’s medication
To learn more about how eMAR benefits patients, and to find out how we’ve implemented this program at Central Florida Regional Hospital, please contact us. Visit us online or call 1-800-445-3392 for answers to your questions.