Navigation Links
System of simplified, standardized dosing instructions for prescription drug labels proposed
Date:11/28/2007

PHILADELPHIA, November 28, 2007 - You have just been prescribed a new medication by your doctor and the container label says: "take one tablet by mouth twice daily for 7 days." How much and how often should you take your medicine" This might be easy for you to answer, but 46 percent of adults misunderstand at least one prescription container label, according to a 2006 study published in Annals of Internal Medicine.

Ninety million Americans about half of the adult population suffer from low health literacy. The Institute of Medicine (IOM) defines health literacy as the degree to which individuals can obtain, process, and understand basic health information and services they need to make appropriate health decisions.

At todays Sixth Annual National Health Communication Conference co-sponsored by the American College of Physicians Foundation (ACPF) and IOM, Alastair J.J. Wood, MD, FACP, proposed an evidence-based system of simplified, standardized dosing instructions for prescription medication container labels.

Dr. Wood, a member of the ACPF Medication Labeling Technical Advisory Board, called for a Universal Medication Schedule (UMS) that standardizes prescription medication dosing times on drug container labels so that patients are told to take their medicine at the same four times per day, such as breakfast, lunch, dinner, and bedtime. The UMS would replace the current practice which either instructs patients to take the medicine a specific number of times per day or at specific time intervals.

The benefits of the UMS include use of the same dosing schedule by patients, physicians, and pharmacists; reduced variability in how the medication is prescribed; reduced variability in how the prescription is interpreted by the pharmacist; improved ability of patients to understand how to correctly take their medications; and improved therapeutic outcome, Dr. Wood said.

According to Michael Wolf, PhD, MPH, co-chair of the ACPFs Medication Labeling Technical Advisory Board, a randomized trial of 500 patients found that understanding of the UMS label was five times greater compared to a typical label.

Prescription medication container labels need a radical change, said Ruth Parker, MD, FACP, co-chair of the ACPFs Medication Labeling Technical Advisory Board. Improving drug labels is an issue that sits at the intersection of health literacy and patient safety. The variability of dosing instructions on labels is a source of confusion among patients, which could lead to adverse drug events.

The UMS idea comes in response to a recently released evidence-based ACPF white paper, Improving Prescription Drug Container Labeling in the United States: A Health Literacy and Medication Safety Initiative, that describes problems with current medication labels and notes that poor patient understanding of labels is prevalent and a significant safety concern.

The white paper, presented to the IOM Roundtable on Health Literacy on October 12, 2007, recommends the following standards for improving patient understanding of prescription medication container labels:

  • Use a UMS to convey and simplify dosage/use instructions.
  • Use explicit text to describe dosage/interval in instructions.
  • Organize label in a patient-centered manner.
  • Include distinguishable front and back sides to the label.
  • When possible, include indication for use.
  • Simplify language, avoiding unfamiliar words/medical jargon.
  • Improve typography, use larger, sans serif font.
  • When applicable, use numeric vs. alphabet characters.
  • Use typographic cues (bolding and highlighting) for patient content only.
  • Use horizontal text only.
  • Use a standard icon system for signaling and organizing auxiliary warnings and instructions.

As the ACP Foundation white paper notes, the lack of universal standards and regulations for drug labels is a root cause of medication error, Dr. Parker said.


'/>"/>

Contact: Steve Majewski
smajewski@acponline.org
215-351-2514
American College of Physicians
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Different method of evaluating the urinary tract system reduces radiation dose
2. Lutheran Senior Services Partners with Silverchair Learning Systems to Enhance Employee Training and Education
3. Exempla Healthcare Contracts For Talismans Quality Donor System
4. Summa Health Systems Akron City Hospital Named Leapfrog Top Hospital for 2007
5. Heartline(R) Fitness Systems Named to Inc. Magazines Inaugural List of the 5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies in U.S....
6. University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Complete System-Wide Conversion to Masimo SET Pulse Oximetry Technology
7. Plexus Systems Ranks in Top Third of the 2007 Inc. 5,000 with Three-Year Sales Growth of 226%
8. Document Security Systems (Amex: DMC) Invites You to a Landmark Event
9. Flu Vaccinations Begin on September 29 Maxim Health Systems to Provide 24,000 Flu Shot Clinics Nationwide
10. AtriCure Reports First Human Implant of the Cosgrove-Gillinov Left Atrial Appendage Occlusion System
11. American Heart Association Surgical Supplement Journal Report: Appropriate Hospital Discharge System Can Prevent Future Cardiac Events
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Pixel Film Studios Released ProSlice Levels, a Media ... give their videos a whole new perspective by using the title layers in ... Studios. , ProSlice Levels contains over 30 Different presets to choose from. ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Many women are ... with endometriosis. These women need a treatment plan to not only alleviate symptoms ... can help for preservation of fertility and ultimately achieving a pregnancy. The specialists ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... of Bruton Memorial Library on June 21 due to a possible lice infestation, as reported ... head lice: the parasite’s ability to live away from a human host, and to infest ... in the event that lice have simply gotten out of control. , As lice are ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... 25, 2016 , ... As a lifelong Southern Californian, Dr. Omkar Marathe earned ... the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He trained in Internal Medicine at ... fellowship in hematology/oncology at the UCLA-Olive View-Cedars Sinai program where he had the opportunity ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Conventional wisdom preaches the benefits of moderation, ... the latter, setting the bar too high can result in disappointment, perhaps even self-loathing. ... toward their goal. , Research from PsychTests.com reveals that behind the ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... Mass. , June 24, 2016   Pulmatrix, ... pharmaceutical company developing innovative inhaled drugs, announced today that ... Russell Investments reconstituted its comprehensive set of ... "This is an important milestone for Pulmatrix," ... will increase shareholder awareness of our progress in developing ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 2016  Arkis BioSciences, a leading innovator in ... durable cerebrospinal fluid treatments, today announced it has ... is led by Innova Memphis, followed by Angel ... investors.  Arkis, new financing will accelerate the commercialization ... release of its in-licensed Endexo® technology. ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of ... report to their offering. ... kidney failure, it replaces the function of kidneys by removing ... thus the treatment helps to keep the patient body,s electrolytes ... Increasing number of ESRD patients & substantial healthcare expenditure ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: