PDL Update: Confusion over new and unusual drugs

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Here are a few key scenarios highlighting new or unusual products which have been involved in a recent spate of dispensing errors

PDL has proven and ongoing success in minimising the risk of an incident becoming a claim.

To help pharmacists avoid an incident in the first place here are a few key scenarios highlighting new or unusual products which have been involved in a recent spate of dispensing errors reported to PDL.

Targin and Norspan both have new strengths available on the market. PDL has received an influx of incident reports involving errors in dispensing these products in what seems to be a lack of awareness of the new lines.

Lucrin Depot 30mg has been confused with Lucrin Depot Paediatric 30mg as the two products share the same mg strength.

Spiolto is a new drug used to treat Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and it comes in a delivery device called a respimat. Spiriva also comes in a respimat presentation. These products are confused by pharmacists.

The Statins are increasingly being reported in dispensing errors, probably due to the frequency with which they are prescribed. Either the wrong strength or the wrong Statin are supplied, this problem being compounded by the many generic brands and variations available on the market. Add to this the combination products with Ezetimibe and the available range of Statins becomes even larger.

Denosumab is an injectable drug that is used either for treating osteoporosis or various bone cancers. Care is needed in selecting either the 60mg or the 120mg form of this drug as PDL has observed that a considerable number of errors have occurred in their dispensing.

It is not only newer and unusual drugs causing problems. Care must be exercised when dispensing MS Contin and Oxycontin as these two well- known culprits are often confused. Some consumers cannot tolerate either morphine or oxycodone and an error can have serious ramifications.

PDL recommends to pharmacists to actively research and discuss with colleagues new drugs and strengths hitting the market.

Call PDL on 1300 854 838 if you have any questions or need advice in relation to dispensing.

Click here for more information.


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1 Comment

  1. Beverley Baxter

    Spiriva, Spiolto both have the Respimat scenario which manages to list well down in the CMI that the device blocks or ceases when empty. But how just does this impact on the elderly, infirm? As providers it also then becomes an issue of ensuring the client is capable of loading & priming, can actually remember how long 3 months IS. It should be noted there is a how to video on google which also neglects to discuss the empty situation – not a happy pharmacist!!

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