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Implementation of Electronic Health Record Integration and Clinical Decision Support to Improve Emergency Department Prescription Drug Monitoring Program Use

NCJ Number
Annals of Emergency Medicine Volume: 83 Issue: 1 Dated: JAN 2024 Pages: P3-13
Jason A. Hoppe; Caroline Ledbetter; Heather Tolle; Kennon Heard
Date Published
January 2024
11 pages

This research assesses the implementation of three electronic health record (EHR)-based interventions to increase the use of a prescription drug monitoring program (PDMP) in the emergency department (ED).


In this study, researchers evaluated the implementation of 3 electronic health record (EHR)-based interventions to increase prescription drug monitoring program (PDMP) use in the emergency department (ED): EHR-PDMP integration, addition of a PDMP risk score, and addition of EHR-based clinical decision support alert to review the PDMP when prescribing an opioid. The EHR-PDMP integration did not increase PDMP use in the ED, but a PDMP risk score and a clinical decision support alert were associated with modest increases in the probability of PDMP review. When the PDMP is reviewed, ED clinicians are less likely to prescribe opioids to patients with a high number of prior opioid prescriptions. Three intervention stages were implemented using a prospective stepped-wedge design at 5 university-affiliated EDs split into 3 practice groups. The PDMP use and prescribing rates during the 3 stages were compared with baseline before EHR integration and a sustainability stage where the clinical decision support alert was removed, but EHR integration and risk score remained. Generalized linear mixed model with logit link function and a random intercept for clinicians was analyzed. The ED provider PDMP review before opioid prescribing was low in all stages. The highest review rate occurred during interruptive clinical decision support alerts, 23.8% (interquartile range 10.6 to 37.5). Overall, opioid prescribing declined, and PDMP review was not associated with a decrease in opioid prescribing. PDMP review was associated with a reduction in the probability of prescribing an opioid as the number of prior opioid prescriptions increased (odds ratio: 0.92 [95% confidence interval: 0.91 to 0.94] for every additional prescription). (Published Abstract Provided)