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Pavani Sai Munagari, Supriya Chandrasekhar, Sowmya Byreddy, Uha Priya Mandyam, Balaji Rao Sake, Dhanunjaya Sandopa


A medication error is any preventable event that may cause or lead to inappropriate medication use or patient harm while the medication is in the control of the health care professional, patient, or consumer. The aim of the present study is to investigate the factors associated with the medication errors in tertiary care hospital. This is a prospective observational study conducted for a period of 6 months at department of general medicine in tertiary care hospital. Prescription data was collected from 300 patients during this period. We found half of the prescriptions with medication errors and observed dispensing errors (38.31%) as the major source of error, followed by administration errors (34.41%) and prescribing errors (27.27%). Further, we subcategorized each type of error and investigated the root cause. Prescribing errors can be prevented by prescriber, by evaluating patient’s total status and reviewing all existing drug therapy before prescribing to avoid medication errors and also prescriber should appropriately monitor clinical signs, symptoms and relevant laboratory data to avoid untreated conditions. Administration error can be prevented by nurse by checking the case sheet of the patient thoroughly and administer drug to the patient without failure and by notifying the physician if the prescribed drugs are out of stock. Patients who are not available at the time of administration of drugs should be remembered and drugs should be administered when they are available. Dispensing errors can be prevented by pharmacist by making themselves available to prescribers and nurses to provide information and advice about correct use and dose of medications and also pharmacist should make nurses to review the therapy given to the patients to avoid omission errors. Strict inventory control is needed to avoid stock crisis situations. Inventory status information must be available with the prescribers to avoid omission errors.

Keywords: Medication errors, prescribing errors, administration errors, dispensing errors, prescriber, clinical pharmacist, nurse, tertiary care teachng hospital.

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