Background Medicines errors associated with high-risk agents such as chemotherapy drugs may have significant outcomes. At Sultan Qaboos University Hospital (SQUH), the aseptic preparation unit (APU) is responsible for preparing chemotherapy and Total Parenteral Nutrition (TPN) preparations. The number of total chemotherapy orders has doubled over the past two years. Due to increased consumption, cost and complexity of regimes, it is important to for a chemotherapy-verifying pharmacist (CVP) to cheque all chemotherapy prescriptions prior to preparation.
Purpose The aim of the study was to describe and evaluate pharmaceutical care interventions, focusing on chemotherapy prescribing and preparation at SQUH.
Materials and Methods This retrospective descriptive study was based in the APU of SQUH. It covered a total time frame of February 2011 to March 2012, which was divided into two periods of 7 months of pre- and post-CVP involvement. The interventions were evaluated for type and cost.
Results During the study, 159 interventions were documented. Monthly interventions increased from 3 to 16 after the involvement of a CVP. Drug dosing (75%) was the most frequent intervention in the drug regimen category (59.7%). Interventions in drug selection (34.6%) included addition (25%) and deletion (27%) of drugs. Around 50% of the interventions avoided toxicity and 35% improved efficacy. The financial impact of CVP interventions was evaluated in 59 interventions (37%). The total cost saved from the 59 interventions was Omani R.O. 18,114 (€36,478). Methotrexate (12.5%) was the drug with most frequent interventions. The expensive drug with most frequent interventions was pegylated asparaginase (4.5%).
Conclusions Chemotherapy verification prior to preparation has been demonstrated to improve safety and efficacy and decrease health care costs. A clinical pharmacist’s participation in chemotherapy preparation and prescribing is essential, in order to provide quality care.
No conflict of interest.
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