Harvard study finds MedAware cuts prescription errors

Medication Photo: Reuters

The study analysed records from almost 800,000 patients in order to assess the efficacy of MedAware’s algorithm.

A study by Harvard Medical school has found that the algorithms developed by Israeli startup MedAware have provided a comprehensive validation of MedAware's software, designed to eliminate prescription errors.

The study analysed records from almost 800,000 patients in order to assess the efficacy of MedAware’s solution. Dr. David Bates, a leading national Patient Safety expert and opinion leader, Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and a Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard School of Public Health said, “It has been hard to find medication errors which come completely out of the blue - likely a medication used only in pregnant women which is ordered for an elderly male - but this approach detects orders which appear to be anomalous in some way, and it represents a very exciting new way to pick these errors up before they get to the patient.”

MedAware’s cofounder and CEO Dr. Gidi Stein said, “Minimizing these errors is clearly of the utmost importance, as at the end of the day, it’s our patients and loved ones who are at risk, and we must do everything in our power to reduce that risk. We need to find innovative ways to identify and eliminate errors, while reducing alert fatigue - hence our solution.”

Founded in 2012, the company's investors include OurCrowd, BIRD, MassChallenge, IBM Alpha Zone and others.

The findings, published in the Journal of American Medical Informatics Association (JAMIA) revealed that MedAware’s technology establishes a new standard for prescription alerts and patient safety vis-à-vis traditional rule-based systems. These out-dated solutions, can only detect a fraction of the actual errors, only those that they were pre-set to identify, and these solutions are not built to identify random or complex errors. Moreover, since current CDS systems are not patient-specific and not self-adaptive, they suffer from high false alarm rates, directly contributing to a phenomenon known as “alert fatigue”, where physicians simply learn to disregard alerts.

The report found that MedAware’s technology both identifies errors otherwise undetected and minimizes challenges associated with provider alert fatigue, and thus could reduce prescription errors with high accuracy, reducing medical costs and saving lives.

In the US healthcare market, more than $20bn is lost, annually, as a result of prescription errors and their consequences. Beyond the financial ramifications, it’s clear that errors in prescriptions can, and are, very damaging to patients, leading to prolonged illness, contraction of new disease and often death. Prescription errors are also found to be one of the main causes for extended lengths of stay and hospital readmissions.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on January 22, 2017

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2017

Medication Photo: Reuters
Medication Photo: Reuters
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