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Int J Risk Saf Med. 2017;29(1-2):81-99. doi: 10.3233/JRS-170741.

Opinions of Maltese doctors and pharmacists on medication errors.

Author information

1
Medicines Authority, Malta Life Sciences Park, Sir Temi Zammit Buildings, San ń†wann, Malta.
2
Office of the Commissioner for Mental Health, Ministry for Energy and Health (Health), Malta.
3
Department of Rheumatology, Mater Dei Hospital, Msida, Malta.
4
Department of Pharmacy, University of Malta, Msida, Malta.
5
Department of Biology, School of Pharmacy, University of Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Pharmacovigilance directive 2010/84/EU focused attention on medication errors and encouraged regulators to identify causing and contributing factors.

OBJECTIVES:

(1) To study opinions of doctors/pharmacists on factors bearing a causal link to MEs as well as ways to minimise MEs (2) to test whether differences in opinion exist between subgroups of doctors and pharmacists working in community, hospital or office settings.

METHODS:

Different questionnaires were circulated to doctors and pharmacists. Respondents were subdivided according to their primary practice.

RESULTS:

320 responses were received (204 doctors/116 pharmacists). Differences in opinion reaching statistical significance were observed on distractions from staff, overwork and fatigue, availability of technical resources and having more than 1 doctor on duty. For pharmacists', differences on issues of generic medicine availability and interruptions were found.

CONCLUSION:

Distractions and interruptions while executing tasks was flagged as an area requiring attention. Issues of overwork and fatigue affect especially doctors in hospital the majority of which are of the opinion that regulatory control on patient numbers could minimize errors. Increasing technical resources and keeping knowledge up-to-date, addressing overwork and high patient workloads have been identified as important areas when looking to reduce MEs.

KEYWORDS:

Medication errors; dispensing errors; prescribing errors

PMID:
28885222
DOI:
10.3233/JRS-170741
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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