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Medicines safety experts call for rewrite of packaging Regulations

By News team

Regulations that govern the naming, labelling and packaging of medicines should be rewritten to take into account pack design and the risk that it poses in terms of human error, according to UK expert in medicines safety pharmacist David Cousins.

Dr Cousins said that if the current EU Regulations were rewritten to include “human factor principles” it would put pressure on manufacturers  to look at ways of minimising human error when they consider the naming, labelling and packaging of medicines.

He said in the UK there has been some progress around design and human error especially in the generics industry but added: “That doesn’t mean that there isn’t more to do.”    

His comments follow a call for a global solution to the issue of medicines safety around the design of medicines.

The International Medication Safety Network, which held a conference in Paris earlier this month (10 October 2013), has called for manufacturers to take human error and patient safety into consideration when making decisions about the naming, labelling and packaging of medicines. It also wants there to be more design testing around these features before medicines are released onto the market.

Health services should also assess the labelling, naming and packaging of medicines from a patient safety and human error perspective before deciding whether to buy them, the IMSN decided.

The IMSN is organising an international summit next year to discuss the issue.

Citation: The Pharmaceutical JournalURI: 11129183

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  • Different types of medicines packaging (Skripko_Levgen_Dreamstime)

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