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by Anand Rakesh Babu | Lavanya Kothuru | Israel Interiano | Mohamed Ahmed | Peter G. Bresko
Published on July 27, 2021

The current climate in the Middle East dictates that any medication deemed to be potentially misused or abused requires a higher level of scrutiny and monitoring by the healthcare facility’s physicians and pharmacists. To maximize the ability to investigate controlled medication prescriptions, it is important for the facility’s medications platform to interface with its electronic health records (EHR) for better and safer prescribing practices; as well as easily accessible information for physicians and pharmacists.

Healthpoint worked with Cerner to develop and launch a controlled medications platform that allows for much easier documentation, faster access to information and better dispensing for patients receiving specific medications.

By leveraging its Cerner electronic platform for prescribing controlled medications Healthpoint has been able to make several positive changes, including enhancing patient safety, reducing manual processes, and having greater visibility into a patient’s overall prescribed medication record. In addition, Healthpoint has experienced an improvement in ensuring the prescription matches the diagnosis for controlled medications, an enhancement in prescribing the correct frequency for every prescription and has increased the overall completeness of documentation when prescribing controlled medications.

Physicians at Healthpoint are not the only beneficiaries. Pharmacies across the UAE have also leveraged the capabilities offered by Cerner. These other entities have collectively reduced the number of prescriptions dispensed outside the designated time, therefore ensuring the prescription was dispensed with the correct duration and accurate quantity.

All improvements have had a direct impact on patient safety. In addition, Healthpoint has reduced its workload by removing the need to enter information into two disparate systems. Since going live, Healthpoint physicians have entered 3,062 prescriptions (from Feb to May 2021) conveniently from the patient’s chart rather than into a separate and disconnected system. Cerner functionality has ensured that all information entered from its EHR connects in a better way with UAE’s national platform for controlled medications.

The improvements made have demonstrated a collective development in safer prescribing practices amongst physicians, pharmacists, and patients.  Without such technology, physicians would have had to spend more time using a system and less time with the patient. Pharmacists can also rest well knowing they are leveraging a proven system that supports the overall care of patients and allows them to spend more time helping patients with medication-related inquiries.

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