The search yielded 128 Category 1 articles. These articles were then placed in two tables—one table summarizing each of the systematic reviews (Table B-1)3 and the other table summarizing each of the experimental and observational studies (Table B-2).4 Within the table, the articles were then organized by the type of health IT component.5

An additional 479 articles were identified as Category 2, which inform broader parameters of patient safety and health IT. These parameters include efforts to improve quality of health care through the implementation of one or more of the following: system design, systems analysis, usability, user-computer interface, or human factors.

The remaining studies were classified as Category 3 studies, which did not meet the inclusion criteria and were not broadly considered in the literature review or table.

Although Category 1 articles published before January 2005 and Category 2 articles were not included in the literature review table, these articles were used throughout the committee’s deliberations as background. Additionally, articles that were not studies or reviews of studies, such as editorials and commentaries, were not included in the literature table but were still considered and used in the analysis of the report.


3 Table B-1 is included on CD in the back of the book and online at:

4 Table B-2 is included on CD in the back of the book and online at:

5 The majority of the studies focused on how individual components of health IT affect patient safety (e.g., alerts, bar-coding, clinical decision support, EHRs, electronic prescribing, patient engagement tools, smartpumps, surveillance tools, and other health IT–assisted care). Therefore, the tables were organized by the components that each article was studying. Articles not focusing on a specific component were placed at the beginning of each table and are labeled as “overview” articles.

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