Patient safety

Working Groups Meeting for the Global Patient Safety Challenge on Medication Safety

22-24 August 2016 in Geneva, Switzerland

The first in-person meeting of the Working Groups was held on 22-24 August 2016 at WHO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. It was attended by 44 international experts, health care professionals, patients, leaders in patient safety and medication safety, and industry representatives from 23 countries.

Meeting participants were divided into their respective pre-assigned Working Groups: Patients and public, Health care professionals, Medicines, Systems and practices and Monitoring and evaluation, to discuss a Challenge timeline and five-year implementation plan.The Steering Board met on 25 August 2016 to synthesize feedback from the group breakout sessions, deliberate next steps and determine effective collaboration and discussion between groups. The Working Groups Meeting provided an opportunity to review the current status of medication safety, identify cross-cutting gaps in the medication use process and determine how WHO can add the most value in improving medication safety systems for Member States.

Three flagship element reports on polypharmacy, transitions of care and high-risk medicines were prepared and presented to help target discussions regarding the development of interventions. There was unanimous agreement on how the proposed interventions should be universal, concise and instigate long-lasting behavior change.

The WHO Global Patient Safety Challenge on Medication Safety is directed and coordinated by the Patient Safety and Quality Improvement unit in the Service Delivery and Safety department (SDS), in collaboration with the Essential Medicines and Health Products (EMP) department and under the supervision of the WHO Envoy for Patient Safety, Sir Liam Donaldson. The Global Patient Safety Challenge on Medication Safety is planned to be launch in the first half of 2017.

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