In the data model for the drug order table, there is a drug_inventory_id which I believe maps to a row in the drug table. Drugs in the drug table are mapped to a drug and a formulation. For example, paracetamol 500 mg.
When we create a drug order, it seems like we are required to use an entry from the drug table. However this is contrary to my experiences ordering medication in other emrs. In general, as the prescriber, I will prescribe paratecamol 1000 mg q6 hours as needed. I will not have to write paracetamol 500 mg x 2 tabs q5 hours as needed. The pharmacist will receive the order and then choose how to dispense, is it 2 500 mg tabs, or 4 250 mg tabs, etc.
Would appreciate it if someone could clarify if the above understanding is correct.
If this is correct, why did we so tightly link the drug order to the formulation? I’m sure there are good reasons.
If this is the case (tight coupling), is there a way of handling this better (UI, some mapping table of amounts prescribed to quantities of tabs, etc.) so that clinicians are not required to do the math of calculating the number of pills for a given dose? Although this seems trivial in this use case, it becomes more relevant in more complicated dosing schemes as for chemotherapy regimens.