The Safety Assurance Factors for EHR Resilience (SAFER) Guides are a suite of tools that include checklists and recommended practices designed to help health care providers and the organizations that support them assess and optimize the safety and safe use of electronic health records.
The SAFER Guides complement existing health information technology safety tools and research developed by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology. AHRQ's Patient Safety Organizations have explicitly identified health IT as a high priority area because of the enormous impact EHRs are having on patient safety; and the SAFER Guides provide evidence-based tools to improve patient safety.
Rigorously developed by leading health IT safety and informatics researchers and based on the latest available evidence, expert opinion, stakeholder engagement and field work, each SAFER Guide addresses a critical area associated with the use of EHRs through a series of self-assessment checklists, practice worksheets and recommended practices. The ONC suggests starting with the foundational guides (high priority practices and organizational responsibilities) and choose other guides according to needs. Areas addressed include:
- High priority practices
- Organizational responsibilities
- Patient identification
- Computerized provider order entry with decision support
- Test results review and follow-up
- Clinician communication
- Contingency planning
- System interfaces
- System configuration