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Medication Safety 

Medication Safety
Chapter:
Medication Safety
Author(s):

Alan F. Merry

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199366149.003.0017
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date: 11 December 2019

Perioperative medication safety consists largely of achieving the six “rights” of medication administration at each stage of every patient’s pathway, from primary care into the hospital, through the ward, operating room, postoperative and/or intensive care units, the ward (again), and back into the community. The abuse of medications by clinicians and the security of the supply chain for essential medications are also relevant. Understanding failures in medication safety requires an understanding of the nature of error and violation within complex systems, and applying these general principles in the context of perioperative care, including particular situations such as pediatrics and anesthesia or sedation in remote locations. Measurement of initiatives to improve medication safety is particularly challenging. Retrospective review of clinical records, incident reporting, facilitated incident reporting, prospective augmented observational techniques, and trigger tools have all been used for this purpose.

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