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November 2018

Improving Pediatric Electronic Health Record Usability and Safety Through Certification: Seize the Day

Author Affiliations
  • 1National Center for Human Factors in Healthcare, MedStar Health, Washington, DC
  • 2Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, DC
  • 3The Pew Charitable Trusts, Washington, DC
JAMA Pediatr. 2018;172(11):1007-1008. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2018.2784

In health care, children are not simply little adults. The US Food and Drug Administration, medical product manufacturers, and even US Congress have acknowledged the key differences between adult and pediatric care, including that the medicines that work for parents and guardians may not have the same effect in their biological children.1 However, that same trajectory has not borne out with a technology that affects nearly every aspect of care: electronic health records (EHRs), which help clinicians prescribe medications, obtain clinical decision support, view health histories, and complete countless other tasks critical to safe, high-quality care. For EHRs, the unique needs of pediatric patients and the differences between care for them and adults have not been recognized yet.

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