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July 13, 2005

Computerized Physician Order Entry Systems and Medication Errors

Author Affiliations

Letters Section Editor: Robert M. Golub, MD, Senior Editor.

JAMA. 2005;294(2):178-181. doi:10.1001/jama.294.2.179-c

To the Editor: We believe that the study by Dr Koppel and colleagues1 was misleading and inaccurate. Many of the errors that they identified are actually related to antiquated software and poor system integration. For example, the errors from assumed dose information and the requirement to provide diluents illustrate an old system that was originally built for use by pharmacies; currently available systems list doses based on the most common prescribing patterns of the physicians. Medication discontinuation failures occur only if the system is unable to provide drug duplication or interaction alerts.