An Interdisciplinary Academic Detailing Approach to Decrease Inappropriate Medication Prescribing by Physician Residents for Older Veterans Treated in the Emergency Department

Academic Article


  • Objective: To evaluate the impact of an academic detailing intervention delivered as part of a quality improvement project by a physician–pharmacist pair on (1) self-reported confidence in prescribing for older adults and (2) rates of potentially inappropriate medications (PIMs) prescribed to older adults by physician residents in a Veteran Affairs emergency department (ED). Methods: This quality improvement project at a single site utilized a questionnaire that assessed knowledge of Beers Criteria, self-perceived barriers to appropriate prescribing in older adults, and self-rated confidence in ability to prescribe in older adults which was administered to physician residents before and after academic detailing delivered during their emergency medicine rotation. PIM rates in the resident cohort who received the academic detailing were compared to residents who did not receive the intervention. Results: Sixty-three residents received the intervention between February 2013 and December 2014. At baseline, approximately 50% of the residents surveyed reported never hearing about nor using the Beers Criteria. A significantly greater proportion of residents agreed or strongly agreed in their abilities to identify drug–disease interactions and to prescribe the appropriate medication for the older adult after receiving the intervention. The resident cohort who received the educational intervention was less likely to prescribe a PIM when compared to the untrained resident cohort with a rate ratio of 0.73 (P <.0001). Conclusion: Academic detailing led by a physician–pharmacist pair resulted in improved confidence in physician residents’ ability to prescribe safely in an older adult ED population and was associated with a statistically significant decrease in PIM rates.
  • Authors

    Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Moss JM; Bryan WE; Wilkerson LM; King HA; Jackson GL; Owenby RK; Van Houtven CH; Stevens MB; Powers J; Vaughan CP
  • Start Page

  • 167
  • End Page

  • 174
  • Volume

  • 32
  • Issue

  • 2