Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Farm Hosp. 2012 Jan-Feb;36(1):24-32. doi: 10.1016/j.farma.2010.12.002. Epub 2011 Apr 22.

[Failure modes and effects analysis in the prescription, validation and dispensing process].

[Article in Spanish]

Author information

  • 1Servicio de Farmacia, Hospital Ramón y Cajal, Madrid, España.



To apply a failure modes and effects analysis to the prescription, validation and dispensing process for hospitalised patients.


A work group analysed all of the stages included in the process from prescription to dispensing, identifying the most critical errors and establishing potential failure modes which could produce a mistake. The possible causes, their potential effects, and the existing control systems were analysed to try and stop them from developing. The Hazard Score was calculated, choosing those that were ≥ 8, and a Severity Index = 4 was selected independently of the hazard Score value. Corrective measures and an implementation plan were proposed.


A flow diagram that describes the whole process was obtained. A risk analysis was conducted of the chosen critical points, indicating: failure mode, cause, effect, severity, probability, Hazard Score, suggested preventative measure and strategy to achieve so. Failure modes chosen: Prescription on the nurse's form; progress or treatment order (paper); Prescription to incorrect patient; Transcription error by nursing staff and pharmacist; Error preparing the trolley.


By applying a failure modes and effects analysis to the prescription, validation and dispensing process, we have been able to identify critical aspects, the stages in which errors may occur and the causes. It has allowed us to analyse the effects on the safety of the process, and establish measures to prevent or reduce them.

Copyright © 2010 SEFH. Published by Elsevier Espana. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk