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Carts, Medication, Computerized

Definition : Medication carts designed with computerized capabilities to facilitate the storage and transportation of medication and other supplies to the point of care (e.g., patient bed). These carts usually include shelves and compartments appropriate for organizing the storage and transportation of medication, instruments (e.g., syringes), and other supplies needed for the administration of medications. They frequently include a removable section of drawers (a "cassette") that is used as a unit-dose system to dispense individual daily medications from the pharmacy to each patient. A computer with appropriate software is also an integral part of the cart. Computerized medication carts record all access to the system and electronically lock medication drawers to keep medications inaccessible without authentication (e.g., using a magnetic card or bar-code). The carts usually require a scan of the medication and the patient wristband, reducing the risk of wrong medication and/or duplicate dosing. Computerized medication carts may provide data to hospital information systems and/or be used as a component of medication-dispensing automated systems designed to provide safe and orderly control of medicine dispensing throughout a healthcare facility (i.e., decentralized medication management systems); the carts also provide further increase of patient safety and data accessibility while reducing the chance of medication errors.

Entry Terms : "Computers-on-Wheels (COWs), Medication Administration" , "Medication Carts, Computerized" , "Medicine Carts, Computerized" , "Workstations-on-Wheels (WOWs), Medication Administration"

UMDC code : 31180

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