Reducing prescribing errors

Document type
Literature review
Corporate author(s)
Health Foundation (Great Britain)
Health Foundation
Date of publication
1 April 2012
Health Services
Social welfare
Material type

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This evidence scan examines strategies to reduce prescribing errors. Prescribing errors include mistakes or inaccuracies when choosing and ordering treatments, such as wrong doses or illegible prescriptions. Eight databases were searched and 123 studies were included about strategies for reducing prescribing errors, predominantly from North America. Studies about errors of omission, such as not prescribing a drug that might be helpful, were excluded because it is difficult to be objective about what medications should be prescribed in any individual instance. The scan does not cover other medication errors such as those related to dispensing or administration.