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PSNet: Patient Safety Network
Journal Article

Dispensing errors in community pharmacy: perceived influence of sociotechnical factors.

Szeinbach S, Seoane-Vazquez E, Parekh A, et al. International journal for quality in health care : journal of the International Society for Quality in Health Care. 2007;19:203-9.

Medication errors may originate at each step of the prescribing process, and a prior study conducted in the inpatient setting demonstrated that nearly 4% of medication orders may be dispensed incorrectly. In this study, community pharmacists were surveyed regarding their perceptions of the frequency of dispensing errors and factors contributing to errors. Respondents felt that dispensing errors were relatively frequent and were more likely when pharmacists were overworked, a sentiment supported by prior research. Bar coding has been advocated as one means of potentially reducing drug dispensing errors.