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As people get older, polypharmacy increases and there is an increased risk of adverse drug events, drug interactions, low medication adherence, increasing economic burden, hospital admissions and even drug-related deaths.1 It has also been stated that the problems of inappropriate pharmacotherapy are expected to grow in the future as new drugs are introduced, new uses for old drugs are found and as the population lives longer with an increased risk of chronic medical conditions. Poor communication of medical information suggests that 40 –85% of elderly patients have at least one error in their medications when they are transferred between primary and hospital care.2–6 In order to improve quality in the use of medications in society, and for individual patients, there is a need to identify problems and errors in structures and processes to improve the outcome of care and to reduce errors.7
A systematic analysis of potential problems and limitations during the standard patient medication care process was performed by the Drug and Therapeutics Committee at Lund University Hospital in 1999. This followed admission, hospital stay and post discharge. After confirmation of the problems, a project was initiated. The aim was to build a model based on systematic training, activities and responsibilities, to identify, solve and prevent drug related problems (DRPs) in the healthcare process, starting from when a patient is admitted to hospital. For patient based clinical pharmacy services, we identified no systematic research or models focusing on all of these aspects.
Herein is an overview of the results which have been published in 17 separate publications.2–6 8–19 Readers are encouraged to follow-up specific results by referring to tables 2 and 3 for the referenced summary.
A systematic analysis of …