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Evaluation of an Outpatient Modified Prescription Form

This study has been completed.
Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA)
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Amanda Kennedy, University of Vermont Identifier:
First received: November 17, 2005
Last updated: December 14, 2011
Last verified: December 2011
The purpose of this study is to determine if a modified paper prescribing form decreases prescribing errors compared to a traditional or standard paper prescribing form.

Condition Intervention
Medication Errors
Device: prescription form

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Prevention
Official Title: Evaluation of an Outpatient Modified Paper Prescription Form in 4 Rural States to Address the Public Health Problem of Prescribing Error

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by University of Vermont:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • error rates of standard versus modified prescriptions per prescriber [ Time Frame: 200 prescriptions each ]

Enrollment: 84
Study Start Date: August 2005
Study Completion Date: January 2011
Primary Completion Date: February 2010 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Intervention Details:
    Device: prescription form
    Two prescription pads contained modified forms and two prescription pads were similar to the prescription pads the prescriber had been using. Providers completed 100 standard and 100 modified prescriptions
Detailed Description:

The broad goal of this proposal is to reduce outpatient prescribing errors in rural primary care practices. Although computerized technology is available for prescribing, it has not yet been implemented in most settings. Additionally, rural prescribers will likely be the last to have the means to adopt this technology. Due to the substantial morbidity and mortality in the United States caused by outpatient medication errors, there is an urgent need for low-cost solutions. This research plan will evaluate a modified paper prescription form that may be implemented in rural primary care settings cheaply and quickly with the goal of outpatient prescription error reduction.

The specific aims of this project are:

  1. To determine if a modified paper prescription form decreases overall prescribing errors compared to a standard paper prescription form
  2. To determine if a modified paper prescription form decreases omission errors compared to a standard paper prescription form
  3. To determine prescriber satisfaction with the modified prescription form

Rural prescribers from four states will be randomly recruited to write prescriptions on standard and modified forms. Prescription duplicates of both types will be analyzed for errors. Prescriber satisfaction with the modified form will be evaluated using surveys and focus groups.

Medication errors are a public health problem. Low-cost technology that is shown to reduce medication errors would benefit all rural patients who receive prescriptions.


Ages Eligible for Study:   21 Years and older   (Adult, Senior)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Must be a physician, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant with a current license to write outpatient prescriptions
  • Must practice in Family Practice, Internal Medicine, or Pediatrics
  • Must practice in rural Vermont, West Virginia, South Dakota, or Montana
  • Must write outpatient paper prescriptions
  • Must write prescriptions in English

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Not licensed to write prescriptions
  • Practice in a specialty, inpatient, or long term care setting
  • Do not write paper prescriptions
  • Do not write prescriptions in English
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Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00256594

United States, Vermont
University of Vermont, Division of General Internal Medicine
Burlington, Vermont, United States, 05401
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of Vermont
Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA)
Principal Investigator: Amanda G Kennedy, PharmD University of Vermont
  More Information

Responsible Party: Amanda Kennedy, Assistant Professor of Medicine, University of Vermont Identifier: NCT00256594     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 1 R04RH05814-01-00
Study First Received: November 17, 2005
Last Updated: December 14, 2011

Keywords provided by University of Vermont:
Medical Errors
Medication Errors
Prescriptions, Drug processed this record on April 28, 2017