Purpose: To determine the effect of electronic prescribing (EP) with a clinical information system (Intellivue Clinical Information Portfolio, Philips, UK) on prescribing errors and omitted doses in a paediatric intensive care unit (PICU).
Methods: Prospective audit of prescribing errors and omitted doses for 96 h periods in three epochs: (1) before implementation of EP, (2) 1 week and (3) 6 months later.
Results: There was a non-significant reduction in prescribing errors: 8.8% (95% CI 4.4-13.2) pre-implementation of EP versus 8.1% (4.4-11.8) 1 week after implementation and 4.6% (2.0-7.2) 6 months later. The prevalence of omitted doses decreased significantly 6 months following implementation, changing from 8.1% (5.8-10.4) pre-implementation to 10.6% (6.5-14.7) 1 week after implementation and 1.4% (CI 0-2.8%) 6 months after implementation (P < 0.05).
Conclusion: EP within a clinical information system increases medication safety in a PICU.