A substantial proportion of nurses' work consists of medication related tasks undertaken in a current environment of high medication error rates. Electronic medication management systems (EMMS) are anticipated to address many of the factors which contribute to errors. These factors, for example illegible hand-written drug orders, reputedly require nurses to spend additional time in clarification and discussion. We report an observational modified time and motion study of 44 registered nurses (215 hours of observation) in a major academic hospital to quantify the time nurses spend in medication related tasks prior to EMMS introduction. On average nurses spent seven minutes in an 8.75 hour shift clarifying or discussing medication issues. The majority of this time (5.4mins) was spent talking with other nurses. Only 1.6 minutes was spent clarifying or discussing medication with doctors. Our results call into question some of the predicted efficiency benefits to nurses' work following EMMS introduction.
IOS Press, Inc.
6751 Tepper Drive
Clifton, VA 20124
Tel.: +1 703 830 6300
Fax: +1 703 830 2300 firstname.lastname@example.org
(Corporate matters and books only) IOS Press c/o Accucoms US, Inc.
For North America Sales and Customer Service
West Point Commons
Lansdale PA 19446
Tel.: +1 866 855 8967
Fax: +1 215 660 5042 email@example.com