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Medication Safety During Transitions from Hospital to Home for Elderly Patients

Home medications

The transition from hospital care to home represents a period of heightened risk for medication errors, especially for the elderly population. Current knowledge of medication safety and underlying mechanisms for medication-related harm during this period are insufficient, and effective intervention strategies are lacking.

Our Goals

The long-term goal of our effort is to develop risk-informed tools for inpatient, transitional and outpatient care providers to effectively engage and support patients to improve patient safety. The overall goal of this project is to develop a patient-centric risk model of medication errors in ambulatory care. Using a multisite study design conducted at two large integrated health care systems — the Johns Hopkins Health System and Baylor Scott & White Health — this study seeks to develop a patient-centric model of medication management when older adults transition from hospital to home. The study is rooted in the premise that medication safety during the transition period and in ambulatory settings is influenced by the interplay of a complex set of factors including the tools and practices that patients employ in their home environment, the medication-related tasks they perform, and their interactions with caregivers and health care professionals. Through the use of human factors and systems engineering theories and methods, this study will contribute to a greater understanding of the underlying medication safety-related hazards and mitigation strategies from a patient and family perspective. We will also develop and evaluate a patient-centric risk assessment tool through a prospective quantitative study.

Principal Investigators: Ayse Gurses Yan Xiao, PhD
Research Team Members: Ephrem Abebe, Susan Hannum, Sydney Dy, Ivonne Pena, Eric Howell, Melinda Kantsiper, Carol Sylvester, Mary Myers, Rachel Brown, Andrew Massica, Andrew Wessel
Funding Agency: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
Funding Support: $1.5 million
Dates: 9/30/15 - 9/29/18

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