A Prescription Checklist for Older Adults in ED

The GEMS-Rx list, developed by a panel of 10 ED physicians and a pharmacist, identifies high-risk medications that should not be prescribed to older patients in the emergency department (ED). This list includes first-generation antihistamines, metoclopramide, short-acting opioids, antipsychotics, barbiturates, skeletal muscle relaxants, benzodiazepines, “Z” drugs, and sulfonylureas. Exceptional cases where these medications may be prescribed include seizure disorders, benzodiazepine withdrawal, and end-of-life care. The incorporation of this list in national quality measures could enhance patient safety in EDs. The study, led by Rachel M. Skains, was published in the Annals of Emergency Medicine and supported by the American College of Emergency Physicians.

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