New system to prevent medication errors

The Department of Health and Social Care has launched a new system to help the NHS monitor, learn from and prevent costly medication errors.

Therefore, the NHS will introduce a series of indicators to show whether a prescription may have contributed to a patient being admitted to hospital, linking prescribing data in primary care to hospital admissions and allowing the NHS to monitor and better understand medication errors.

The system launch follows research which highlighted the impact of medication errors, with an estimated 237 million taking place every year. This can range from delivering a prescription late to a patient being given the wrong medication.

Care Minister Caroline Dinenage said: “Today marks a vital step on our journey towards making the NHS the safest healthcare system in the world. While our own research has shown us the shocking toll medication errors take on our health service and its patients, the NHS itself needs a consistent way to measure medication errors. This groundbreaking initiative will help give us the data we need to stamp out these costly errors.”

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