ASHP publishes guidelines on preventing medication errors

The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) has issued guidelines that offer best practices and recommendations for avoiding medication errors.

The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) has issued guidelines that offer best practices and recommendations for avoiding medication errors. The ASHP Guidelines on Preventing Medication Errors in Hospitals highlight the important leadership roles that pharmacists play and opportunities for them on interprofessional teams to limit errors. The guidelines urge organizations to have a comprehensive program that includes a medication safety head, an event reporting system, a collaborative medication safety team, and a continuous quality improvement philosophy about evaluation of errors and harm. "Pharmacists are the leaders in interprofessional efforts to prevent patient harm associated with medication errors," said ASHP chief operating officer and senior vice president Kasey K. Thompson, PharmD, MS, MBA. "These guidelines will serve as an exceptional resource for the entire patient-care team and reflect ASHP's 76-year commitment to constantly improving medication safety through the development of cutting-edge guidelines and other resources." The guidelines address numerous areas in the medication-use process where errors may occur, ranging from patient admission to storage and transcribing.