One of the aims of the Center for Drug Safety and Effectiveness is to support efforts to assure the safest and most effective use of medicines throughout Johns Hopkins Medicine. The opportunities here are as large as Johns Hopkins Medicine itself, which encompasses six academic and community hospitals, four suburban health care and surgery centers, three insurance plans and a nearly 400-person physician group active in more than 30 primary health care outpatient sites.
Many Center faculty are actively involved in clinical care, and its partners, including the Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality and the Department of Pharmacy within Johns Hopkins Hospital, provide important collaborative opportunities to improve the quality of care. Examples include:
The P&T Committee at Johns Hopkins Hospital is led by Brent Petty, MD, a member of the Center’s core faculty. This multidisciplinary Committee serves a vital institutional function by formulating and evaluating policies regarding the distribution, storage and safe use of medications within Johns Hopkins Hospital.
These Reviews are structured, ongoing reviews of prescribing, dispensing and use of medication. As a quality assurance measure, Drug Utilization Reviews (DURs) allow for corrective action, prescriber feedback and inform future evaluations. The Johns Hopkins Department of Pharmacy continually conducts drug utilization reviews that inform their pharmacy practice. Recent reviews include:
In addition to supporting Drug Utilization Reviews, Core Faculty also lead additional longer-term investigations that may explore the quality and determinants of drug utilization in further detail. For example, core faculty member Kenneth Shermock, PharmD, PhD and colleagues are undertaking work to identify causes of the underuse of heparin for venous thrombosis prevention among patients hospitalized at Johns Hopkins, and to develop, implement and evaluate interventions to address this underutilization. Their earlier work assessed diagnostic errors with use of point-of-care devices for assessing anticoagulation status, as well as evaluated the impact of an inpatient anticoagulation management service on clinical outcomes.
Additional projects which explore drug use are the following: