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Care coordination, Emergency department, Health information exchange, Narcotic prescribing, Prescription drug monitoring program



  1. Schoenbaum, Anna E. DNP, RN-BC
  2. Seckman, Charlotte PhD, RN-BC, CNE, FAAN


Timely access to patient data is critical in patient care. The utilization of health information exchange and prescription drug monitoring programs can make pertinent data readily accessible for emergency department providers to coordinate care. A quasi-experimental preintervention-postintervention design, with 62 providers and 53 554 emergency department visits linked to a health information exchange and prescription drug monitoring program, was used to evaluate rates for utilization, laboratory/imaging orders, narcotic prescribing and readmission. Health information exchange utilization increased significantly after the drug monitoring program was implemented (mean = 119.33 to mean = 231.33, t2 = -15.79, P < .001). There was no significant effect postprescription drug monitoring program for laboratory/imaging orders or narcotics at discharge, although narcotic orders during emergency visits increased (F1,23 = 7.953, P = .010), which may suggest the data confirmed the immediate need to control acute or chronic conditions. In addition, readmission rates decreased from 14.64% to 12.58%. Through streamlining processes, health information exchange and prescription drug monitoring program usage were increased, which can improve care. As organizations promote interoperability of health information, the nurse informaticist plays a significant role in managing access to systems that can assist all providers in coordinating care.