MEDICATION SAFETY & ERRORS
Each year, in the United States alone, 7,000 to 9,000 people die as a result of a medication error. Additionally, hundreds of thousands of other patients experience but often do not report an adverse reaction or other medication complications. The total cost of looking after patients with medication-associated errors exceeds $40 billion each year. In addition to the monetary cost, patients experience psychological and physical pain and suffering as a result of medication errors.
The nation’s drug overdose epidemic continues to change and become worse. The epidemic affects every state and now is driven by illicit fentanyl, fentanyl analogs, methamphetamine, and cocaine, often in combination or in adulterated forms. More than 107,000 deaths were reported in the United States between December 2020 to December 2021.
Deaths due to drug overdose have topped a million for the first time since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention began collecting data on the problem more than two decades ago.
Provisional data from CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics indicate that there were an estimated 100,306 drug overdose deaths in the United States during 12-month period ending in April 2021, an increase of 28.5% from the 78,056 deaths during the same period the year before.
The emergence of COVID-19 in early 2020 raised fears that already-rising drug overdose deaths could surge even further amid social isolation, economic stress, and disrupted access to treatment facilities and providers.
Successfully addressing the US opioid overdose epidemic will require a strategy for adolescents and young adults (AYAs). Two in three adults treated for opioid use disorder (OUD) first used opioids when they were younger than age 25.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) receives more than 100,000 U.S. reports each year associated with a suspected medication error.
Most patients who are prescribed opioids after surgery don't take all of the prescribed pills, leaving leftover opioids that could be used inappropriately, a new review of studies finds.
Non-health care facility medication errors resulting in serious medical outcomes.
Every minute of every day, three Americans call a poison control center because they've made a major mistake with their medication.
AMERICANS OVER 50 are using narcotic pain pills in surprisingly high numbers, and many are becoming addicted. While media attention has focused on younger people buying illegal opioids on the black market, dependence can also start with a legitimate prescription from a doctor: A well-meant treatment for knee surgery or chronic back troubles is often the path to a deadly outcome.
Teenagers who abuse opioid drugs, in most cases began when they received the medication from their doctor. Studies show that teens start taking drugs for medical reasons and then continue when they are no longer needed.
March 29, 2017
WHO today launched a global initiative to reduce severe, avoidable medication-associated harm in all countries by 50% over the next 5 years.
The Global Patient Safety Challenge on Medication Safety aims to address the weaknesses in health systems that lead to medication errors and the severe harm that results. It lays out ways to improve the way medicines are prescribed, distributed and consumed, and increase awareness among patients about the risks associated with the improper use of medication.
Objective: The objective of this study is to provide an epidemiologic analysis of medication errors occurring outside of health care facilities that result in serious medical outcomes (defined by the National Poison Database System as “moderate effect,” “major effect,” “death,” or “death, indirect report”).
Americans are taking more medications than ever before.
Nearly 60 to 70 percent of us take at least one prescribed drug, depending upon the estimate; for many it amounts to a fistful, potpourri of pills per day. Meanwhile, new drug approvals have reached a 19-year high.
There were approximately 22,000 ED visits by pediatric patients for opioid poisoning from 2006–2012. Fortunately, very few of these patients died or required mechanical ventilation. Unsurprisingly, more visits in the younger age group were unintentional while the majority of visits in the adolescent age group were intentional.
About half of all surgeries involve some kind of medication error or unintended drug side effects, if a new study done at one of America’s most prestigious academic medical centers is any indication.
From 2000 to 2014 nearly half a million Americans died from drug overdoses. Opioid overdose deaths, including both opioid pain relievers and heroin, hit record levels in 2014, with an alarming 14 percent increase in just one year.
Although it is not uncommon for pediatric patients to be prescribed opioids to treat certain types of moderate to severe pain, new research suggests these patients may be prescribed more opioids than necessary following surgery. A study presented at the ANESTHESIOLOGY® 2015 annual meeting found nearly 60 percent of opioids dispensed to pediatric patients following surgery remained unused, which could lead to the unused medication being abused by other adolescents in the household.
Between 2005 and 2007, medical errors cost Medicare more than $6.9 billion and were responsible for more than 92,000 potentially preventable in-hospital deaths among the plan’s beneficiaries.1 Of all medical errors, medication administration mistakes have ranked among the most common, harming at least 1.5 million people every year, according to a 2006 report from the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies (IMNA).
In a study by the FDA that evaluated reports of fatal medication errors from 1993 to 1998, the most common error involving medications was related to administration of an improper dose of medicine, accounting for 41% of fatal medication errors.
July 20, 2006
Medication errors are among the most common medical errors, harming at least 1.5 million people every year, says a new report from the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies. The extra medical costs of treating drug-related injuries occurring in hospitals alone conservatively amount to $3.5 billion a year, and this estimate does not take into account lost wages and productivity or additional health care costs, the report says.
- The extra medical costs of treating drug-related injuries occurring in hospitals alone conservatively amount to $3.5 billion a year.
WASHINGTON -- Medication errors are among the most common medical errors, harming at least 1.5 million people every year, says a new report from the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies. The extra medical costs of treating drug-related injuries occurring in hospitals alone conservatively amount to $3.5 billion a year, and this estimate does not take into account lost wages and productivity or additional health care costs, the report says.