Inha University Hospital improves "Quality of Care" as its top priority for "Patient Safety"

Inha University Hospital is using a clinical decision support system (CDSS), UpToDate® to lower variability of care and increase clinical effectiveness. We interviewed Dr. Park Hyun-sun, the director of information strategy with Inha University Hospital, who is responsible for planning and supporting introduction through expansion of system on benefits of CDSS.

CDSS was introduced to enable "patient safety"

Our first encounter with "CDSS" was when we were in the process of exploring international standards to prescribe drugs that are more appropriate for patient cases. Under the vision of "Think Safety, Build Value", Inha University Hospital puts patient safety first and strives to create hospital values. That was impressive to know that Wolters Kluwer's clinical decision support system is also a solution that considers patient safety as a top priority.

Therefore, the hospital has actively utilized the CDSS to provide relevant knowledge and contribute to patient safety through standardization of care so that medical staff can safely and efficiently make decisions in patient care.

"Integrated Knowledge Repository" with the latest information

For patient safety, the medical decision- making process has to take into account that characteristics of the individual patient plays an important role, and medical staff who are unable to understand the vast amount of the latest literature in a limited time have a risk of making medical decisions based on incomplete information.

There is a strong demand for an integrated knowledge repository that can be used while planning for diagnosis and treatment to minimize this risk, and it was the CDSS, such as UpToDate, Medi-Span®, and Lexicomp® that met these requirements.

In particular, UpToDate's editorial team constantly evaluates the latest journals and updates its content, providing users with the latest, most accurate recommendations. It is the most widely used among the first-time practitioners who have experience in the field of treatment. In addition, interpretation and on-site application of information are standardized, so that specialists can also minimize treatment and examinations that threaten patient safety and incur costs, contributing to reduction of variability of care.

"The value of the hospital starts from patient safety"

— Dr. Hyunseon Park, Director of Information Strategy Planning Dept. and Professor in Neurosurgery, Inha University Hospital

Enhanced convenience with "reference terms" leading to increase work productivity

While UpToDate is used in the hospital, it is also used as a knowledge dictionary with a comprehensive collection of medical information. Wolters Kluwer also operates a reference terminology called "health language", which is a powerful extension in the real field if it is supported in the future. I'm looking forward to it.

The more you use it together, the more sophisticated it becomes. When it is first introduced, it can be customized according to the characteristics of each hospital, and after that, it can be customized for each medical staff using the CDSS.

Expanding CDSS by introducing additional solutions for non-face-to-face medical services

As the demand and interest in non-face-to-face medical services for the vulnerable groups have increased due to the COVID-19, Inha University Hospital is the only hospital in Korea to get a temporary permission from the government for non-face-to-face care services for foreign residents. As we receive it, we are preparing our platform for non-face-to-face medical care.

To this end, a global drug information solution, Lexicomp, and a clinical screening solution Medi-Span will be implemented in the new electronic medical records (EMR) system, which will be introduced in the near future.

In UpToDate, Inha University Hospital medical staff search for clinical information about 500,000 times each year. About 97.5% of specialists, and teachers at Inha University Hospital use UpToDate every day. It is expected that the expansion of the CDSS will reduce patient errors and simplify procedures based on evidence-based data at point of care to improve patient safety and quality of care.

Based on global drug information, Lexicomp covers a wider range of information than domestic pharmacy dictionaries, allowing medical staff to refer to medication decisions, and Medi-Span automatically screens prescriptions against drug interactions, dosage, duplicate therapy, and patient profiles like pregnancies and lactation, drug allergies, gender and age. Because it proactively screens prescriptions, and works within the EMR, it can contribute to the reduction of unexpected errors and variability of care.

In UpToDate, Inha University Hospital medical staff search for clinical information about 500,000 times each year. About 97.5% of specialists, and teachers at Inha University Hospital use UpToDate every day. It is expected that the expansion of the CDSS will reduce patient errors and simplify procedures based on evidence-based data at point of care to improve patient safety and quality of care.

About Inha University Hospital

Inha University Hospital was opened in 1966 as the first university hospital in Incheon, under the idea of "social restoration of corporate profits and contribution to community". With focus on the value of improvement in patient safety and quality of medical care, it aims to realize strategic hospital management and establish continuous and systematic medical system to serve patient safety. Wolters Kluwer's Clinical Effectiveness solution was introduced in 2008, and it has been striving to make it the safest hospital for patients while working with citizens in the community.

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