40 years of learning and advocacy!

hpheadIn March 1975, Hospital Pharmacy began publishing a monthly journal column called Medication Error Reports, originating the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) Medication Errors Reporting Programme 40 years ago. This advocacy effort, which focused on deidentified medication error stories and prevention strategies, prompted pharmacists from across the United-States of America to report errors to share the lessons learned with other pharmacists. This monthly column expanded in 1977 to include the journal, Nursing ’77, which encouraged nurses to also report errors.

Both USP merjournal features soon caught the interest of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and an agreement was established to automatically share error reports between FDA and ISMP. In 1991, the United States Pharmacopeial Convention (USP) began coordinating the medication error reporting program, which became known as the USP-ISMP Medication Errors Reporting Programme.

ISMP was officially established as a tax-exempt, charitable organization in JanuISMP-2c-150ary 1994. In 2008, USP returned full operation of the reporting program to ISMP, and it was renamed the ISMP National Medication Errors Reporting Programme. FDA and ISMP continue to incorporate the knowledge learned from this error-reporting program to prevent medication errors recurrence and improve patient safety.

Forty years later, numerous medication errors reporting programmes have been established around the world and joined the International Medication Safety Network (IMSN) created in 2006 in Salamanca under the auspices of ISMP Spain. Read more on IMSN members...
Grounded on healthcare practitioners’ willingness to report medication errors, most of IMSN members publish regularly their own newsletters and alert in the columns of pharmacy, nursing and medical journals. Read more on IMSN members’ publications...

(adapted from ISMP Medication Safety Alert! Acute Care 2015; 20 (4): 1-2.)