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Software helps prevent medication errors

Aug 11, 2016 | Medication Errors

New York residents may know that medication errors are a leading cause of patient harm in the United States, and that they are often fatal. To combat the problem, pharmacists are using special software to help identify these mistakes before they occur.

In 2008, Baxter International introduced DoseEdge Pharmacy Workflow Manager. The software connects with barcode scanners, cameras and gravimetric scales to automate the process of tracking, inspecting, routing and reporting intravenous and oral liquid medications. Pharmacists can use the software to perform preproduction medication checks to identify possible preparation errors. According to Baxter, DoseEdge has processed more than 72 million intravenous and oral liquid doses and found over 3 million potential errors in the years it has been on the market.

Baxter stresses that DoseEdge is not intended to replace the expertise of pharmacists but act as an assistant to help prevent errors. Approximately 1.2 million preventable adverse drug events involving intravenous medications happen every year in America, costing between $2.7 billion and $5.1 billion in additional health care expenditures per year.

Millions of Americans are harmed by medication errors each year in the U.S. Medication errors can include the wrong medication, the incorrect dose, adverse drug interactions, failure to identify allergies, failure to read a doctor’s handwriting properly and more. People who have been the victim of a medication mistake or another type of medical error may benefit by speaking to an attorney about their case. It may be advisable to file a medical malpractice lawsuit against the negligent doctor or pharmacist seeking compensation for damages, including medical expenses, loss of income and pain and suffering.

Pharmacy Times, "Software Alerts Pharmacists to 3 Million Potential Medication Errors," Krystle Vermes, Aug. 1, 2016