Safety agency makes better use of anticoagulants its top priority

BMJ 2007; 334 doi: (Published 05 April 2007) Cite this as: BMJ 2007;334:714
  1. Lynn Eaton
  1. London

    Measures to reduce the risk of wrongly administering epidural infusions intravenously and better guidance for patients about anticoagulant drugs are among a series of risk management measures outlined this week to improve patient safety in the NHS.

    The guidance from the National Patient Safety Agency comes after a number of avoidable deaths relating to the use of these and other drugs. Keith Ridge, the chief pharmaceutical officer for England, said that awareness of the importance of reducing weaknesses within healthcare systems was increasing.

    The highest priority for the agency is the number of deaths associated with the use of anticoagulant drugs, such as warfarin, he said. In 2006 alone there were 120 deaths and 480 …

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