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FIP publishes policy statement on patient safety

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The Hague • 17 September 2020

Programmes that allow pharmacists to access patients’ clinical information, non-punitive national systems for reporting, monitoring, analysing and disseminating safety events, safety indicators and benchmarks, and national standards and guidelines are key recommendations for improving patient safety in a new Statement of Policy released by the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) today.

“Patient safety has become a global emergency. Medication safety is a large component of this and encompasses preventing medication errors and medication-related harm, particularly in relation to high-risk medications and polypharmacy, and optimising safe medication use at each stage of a patient’s medication-use journey, notably at the transitions of care. The role of pharmacists and pharmacy teams in patient safety requires recognition and support by healthcare organisations and regulatory bodies,” said Parisa Aslani, FIP vice president and professor in medicines use optimisation at The University of Sydney, Australia.

The statement sets out recommendations for governments, policy makers, FIP member organisations, pharmacists, the support workforce and the pharmaceutical industry in areas of policy, advocacy, training and resources. It also expresses FIP’s commitment to ensure that medication safety remains high on the agenda of world health and healthcare professional organisations, as well as national pharmacy organisations.

“Our goal is to increase the safe and effective use of medications, prevent errors and decrease the risk of harm associated with health care. FIP encourages all healthcare professionals and other key stakeholders, including patients and their caregivers, managers, policy makers and educators, to consider designing and optimising services collaboratively to improve patient safety,” Prof. Aslani said.

The new FIP Statement of Policy is based on the reference document “Patient safety: Pharmacists’ role in ‘Medication without harm’” published last month.

Notes for editors

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that millions of patients are harmed each year due to unsafe health care, with 2.6 million deaths annually in low- and middle-income countries alone. The most detrimental errors are related to misdiagnosis, prescription errors or incorrect use of medicines. Medication errors alone cost an estimated USD 42 billion globally annually, and cause immense personal, social and economic impact.

Links The full FIP Statement of Policy can be found here. The report “Patient safety — Pharmacists’ role in ‘Medication without harm’” is available here.

Images A picture of Parisa Aslani is available here.

About FIP The International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) is the global federation of national associations of pharmacists, pharmaceutical scientists and pharmacy educators, and is in official relations with the World Health Organization. Through its 146 member organisations, it represents over four million practitioners and scientists around the world.

Lin-Nam Wang
Head of Corporate Communications & Advocacy
Tel +31 6 316 29160

Last update 5 July 2018

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