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A national survey on the availability of prefilled medication syringes and medication errors in maternity units across the United Kingdom

Published:December 07, 2022DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijoa.2022.103617
      The rate of medication error is estimated to be 1 in 133 anaesthetics, although recent studies highlight peri-operative medication errors ranging in incidence from 2.6% to 5.3%.
      • Webster C.S.
      • Merry A.F.
      • Larsson L.
      • McGrath K.A.
      • Weller J.
      The frequency and nature of drug administration error during anaesthesia.
      • Gariel C.
      • Cogniat B.
      • Desgranges F.-P.
      • Chassard D.
      • Bouvet L.
      Incidence, characteristics, and predictive factors for medication errors in paediatric anaesthesia: a prospective incident monitoring study.
      • Nanji K.C.
      • Patel A.
      • Shaikh S.
      • Seger D.L.
      • Bates D.W.
      Evaluation of perioperative medication errors and adverse drug events.
      Nearly a third of medication errors result in an adverse drug event and these increase patient morbidity and healthcare costs.
      • Nanji K.C.
      • Patel A.
      • Shaikh S.
      • Seger D.L.
      • Bates D.W.
      Evaluation of perioperative medication errors and adverse drug events.
      Prefilled medication syringes minimise medication errors made by anaesthetists while transferring and diluting drug from vial to syringe.
      • Litman R.S.
      How to prevent medication errors in the operating room? Take away the human factor.
      Multiple societies, including the Royal College of Anaesthetists, recommend the use of prefilled medication syringes if feasible.

      The Royal College of Anaesthetists. Guidelines for the Provision of Anaesthesia Services for an Obstetric Population. 2020. Available from: https://rcoa.ac.uk/gpas/chapter-9#chapter-7. Accessed September 5, 2022.

      Royal Pharmaceutical Society. Professional guidance on the safe and secure handling of medicines 2018. Available from: https://www.rpharms.com/recognition/setting-professional-standards/safe-and-secure-handling-of-medicines/professional-guidance-on-the-safe-and-secure-handling-of-medicines. Accessed September 5, 2022.

      There is paucity of information about the availability of prefilled medication syringes in maternity units across the United Kingdom (UK).

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      References

        • Webster C.S.
        • Merry A.F.
        • Larsson L.
        • McGrath K.A.
        • Weller J.
        The frequency and nature of drug administration error during anaesthesia.
        Anaesth Intens Care Med. 2001; 29: 494-500https://doi.org/10.1177/0310057x0102900508
        • Gariel C.
        • Cogniat B.
        • Desgranges F.-P.
        • Chassard D.
        • Bouvet L.
        Incidence, characteristics, and predictive factors for medication errors in paediatric anaesthesia: a prospective incident monitoring study.
        Br J Anaesth. 2018; 120: 563-570https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bja.2018.01.005
        • Nanji K.C.
        • Patel A.
        • Shaikh S.
        • Seger D.L.
        • Bates D.W.
        Evaluation of perioperative medication errors and adverse drug events.
        Anesthesiology. 2016; 124: 25-34https://doi.org/10.1097/aln.0000000000000904
        • Litman R.S.
        How to prevent medication errors in the operating room? Take away the human factor.
        Br J Anaesth. 2018; 120: 438e-440ehttps://doi.org/10.1016/j.bja.2017.12.001
      1. The Royal College of Anaesthetists. Guidelines for the Provision of Anaesthesia Services for an Obstetric Population. 2020. Available from: https://rcoa.ac.uk/gpas/chapter-9#chapter-7. Accessed September 5, 2022.

      2. Royal Pharmaceutical Society. Professional guidance on the safe and secure handling of medicines 2018. Available from: https://www.rpharms.com/recognition/setting-professional-standards/safe-and-secure-handling-of-medicines/professional-guidance-on-the-safe-and-secure-handling-of-medicines. Accessed September 5, 2022.

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