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Design template for a medication safety programme in an acute teaching hospital
  1. Eileen C Relihan1,2,
  2. Bernard Silke3,
  3. Sheila A Ryder1
  1. 1School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 2, Ireland
  2. 2Medication Safety Office, CEO Offices, St. James's Hospital, James's St., Dublin 8, Ireland
  3. 3Acute Medical Admissions Unit, St James's Hospital, Dublin 8, Ireland
  1. Correspondence to Dr Eileen Relihan, Medication Safety Office, CEO Offices, St James's Hospital, James's St, Dublin 8, Ireland; erelihan{at}


Background Very limited data have been published about the design of medication safety programmes in hospitals.

Objective To describe a template for the structure and operation of a medication safety programme in an acute tertiary setting.

Methods/results A model of an ideal medication safety programme was developed by combining the lessons learnt by the lead author in the role of medication safety officer in an acute teaching hospital for 7 years with the published accounts of best practice from the literature.

Conclusions Given the limited guidance currently available regarding the structure and operation of such programmes, this template goes some way towards addressing a gap in the current patient safety literature. It should be of practical value to healthcare organisations considering either introducing a medication safety programme for the first time or expanding an existing system.

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