Review of Nonformulary Medication Approvals in an Academic Medical Center.

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Review of Nonformulary Medication Approvals in an Academic Medical Center.

Jt Comm J Qual Patient Saf. 2017 Feb;43(2):89-96

Authors: Her QL, Amato MG, Seger DL, Gilmore JF, Fanikos J, Fiskio JM, Bates DW

BACKGROUND: The Joint Commission requires hospitals to formally review formulary medications at least annually based on new clinical information. Although review of nonformulary medication (NFM) use is not required, frequent and inappropriate use of NFMs has the potential to increase hospital costs, negatively affect quality of care, and increase medication errors. Limited resources may restrict an institution's ability to review NFM use in addition to the required annual formulary review. NFM use at Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) was reviewed to provide insight on how to best direct an NFM review that is both effective and efficient. How an NFM review may negatively affect cost, quality of care, and medication errors is also inferred.
METHODS: All approved NFM requests between 2009 and 2012 from Brigham and Women's Hospital's computerized provider order entry system were extracted and categorized according to the American Hospital Formulary Service (AHFS) Pharmacologic-Therapeutic Classification System.
RESULTS: Of the 15,356,016 new medication orders, there were 223,266 NFM approvals for 433 unique NFMs. NFMs were categorized into 91 AHFS, 14 combination, and 4 "Others" classes. Twenty-five AHFS Classes accounted for approximately the top 90% of all NFM approvals, and the top 2 NFMs in each class accounted for a majority of the NFM approvals.
CONCLUSION: Only a few classes of medications and a few medications within each class accounted for most of the NFM use at BWH. Targeting review of the most frequently used NFMs in each class may be a feasible strategy to reviewing NFMs annually that is both effective and efficient in optimizing formulary benefits.

PMID: 28334567 [PubMed - in process]

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