Patient safety perspectives of providers and nurses: the experience of a rural ambulatory care practice using an EHR with E-prescribing

J Rural Health. Fall 2013;29(4):383-91. doi: 10.1111/jrh.12015. Epub 2013 Mar 12.


Purpose: The purpose of this study was to identify and describe safety improvements and concerns indicated by providers and nurses in a rural community ambulatory care practice using an electronic health record with an e-prescribing feature (EHR with eRx).

Methods: Two focus groups were conducted; 1 with providers and the other with nurses. Participants responded to questions and discussed their perceptions of safety improvements and concerns with use of an EHR with eRx. Transcripts were analyzed using sequential and continuous analytic methods.

Findings: Three themes centered on efficiency and patient safety emerged from data analysis: (1) EHR with eRx adoption has led to new improvements and concerns for patient safety, (2) the EHR with eRx has affected efficiency in the clinic, and (3) EHR with eRx adoption has led to workarounds.

Conclusions: Concerns remain among providers and nurses regarding the use of EHR with eRx applications, although concerns differed between groups. Therefore, When EHR improvements are planned, it is important to consider the differing needs of the professionals who deliver care.

Keywords: EHR; e-prescribing; health information exchange; patient safety; rural medical group practices.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Ambulatory Care*
  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Electronic Health Records*
  • Electronic Prescribing*
  • Focus Groups
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Nurses / psychology*
  • Patient Safety*
  • Physicians / psychology*
  • Rural Health Services*