The Impact of Electronic Medical Records on Hospital-Acquired Adverse Safety Events: Differential Effects Between Single-Source and Multiple-Source Systems

The objective was to examine differential impacts between single-source and multiple-source electronic medical
record (EMR) systems, as measured by number of vendor products, on hospital-acquired patient safety events. The
data source was the 2009-2010 State Inpatient Databases of the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project for California,
New York, and Florida, and the Information Technology Supplement to the American Hospital Association’s Annual
Survey. Multivariable regression analyses were conducted to estimate the differential impacts of EMRs between singlesource
and multiple-source EMR systems on hospital-acquired patient safety events. In all, 1.98% of adult surgery
hospitalizations had at least 1 hospital-acquired patient safety event. Basic EMRs with a single vendor or self-developed
EMR systems were associated with a significant decrease in patient safety events by 0.38 percentage point, or 19.2%,
whereas basic EMRs with multiple vendors had an insignificant association. A single-source EMR system enhances the
impact of EMRs on reducing patient safety events.