SACRAMENTO, Calif., March 28 /PRNewswire/ -- As part of an ongoing
campaign to promote patient safety, the California Medical Association (CMA)
and a group of liability insurers today announced that they are sending to
more than 50,000 physicians, Safe Medication Principles, which are
recommendations for safe prescribing, and measures for educating patients
about proper medication use.
The Safe Medication Principles were developed by physicians and risk
managers representing the 35,000-member CMA and three physician-sponsored
professional liability insurers, MIEC, NORCAL and SCPIE, which collectively
insure most California physicians. The document introduced today encourages
physicians to be sure that their patients understand the proper use and
potential side effects of their medicine.
Statewide dissemination of the Principles is part of a new, focused
program by the CMA and the liability insurers to increase patient awareness
about what they and their physicians can do to prevent adverse medication
reactions and generally improve patient safety.
Based on recommendations from a number of medical and liability experts,
the principles are reminders of good medical practices, which many prudent
physicians already follow. They are part of an overall effort to reduce
patient injuries, which may be caused by illegible handwriting, unclear
prescription information, duplication of prescription drugs, and inadequate
patient understanding about the medications they take.
To ensure that prescriptions are clear to pharmacists, the Principles
emphasize the use of legible, standardized abbreviations and terminology on
prescriptions, improved documentation of medications and refills, and close
monitoring of the effectiveness and potential side effects of prescribed
drugs. Physician awareness of all pharmaceuticals and other substances such as
herbs and food supplements that their patients receive is an important step
toward reducing potential patient injuries.
Improving patient adherence to medication advice and reducing the risks of
adverse reactions require a strong partnership between patients and their
physicians, said John Whitelaw, MD, President of the California Medical
Association. The Safe Medication Principles, with which many physicians
already are familiar, provide a framework for involving patients, physicians,
nurses, pharmacists and others in a meaningful collaboration to improve
patient safety," he said.
To link to the Principles, go to CMA's website at www.cmanet.org. You'll
find them under "For Your Information" on the home page.
MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT - Click Here
SOURCE California Medical Association