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  1. Drug Safety and Availability

Safe Use Initiative

Collaborating to Reduce Preventable Harm from Medications

Today, tens of millions of people in the United States depend on prescription and OTC medications to sustain their health—more than four billion prescriptions are written annually. Too many people, however, suffer unnecessary injuries, and some die as a result of preventable medication errors. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) believes that many of these medication-related risks are manageable if parties committed to the safe use of medications work together.

The mission of the Safe Use Initiative is to create and facilitate public and private collaborations within the healthcare community. The goal of the Safe Use Initiative is to reduce preventable harm by identifying specific, preventable medication risks and developing, implementing and evaluating cross-sector interventions with partners who are committed to safe medication use.

Potential partners in Safe Use include:

  • Federal agencies
  • Healthcare professionals and professional societies
  • Pharmacies, hospitals, and other health care entities
  • Patients, caregivers, consumers, and their representative organizations

The Safe Use Initiative is one of three teams organizationally within Professional Affairs and Stakeholder Engagement, or “PASE.”

Through coordinated efforts, we can make significant improvements in the safe use of medications and reduce preventable harm from medication misuse, abuse, and errors.

Additional Resources

Resources For You

New Findings in Patient Safety

  • National Quality Forum (NQF) Releases Anticoagulation Stewardship Playbook to Help Improve Patient Safety
    More than 8 million people in the U.S. take anticoagulants, which work by decreasing the blood’s ability to clot. They are essential and life-saving for people with cardiac and vascular disorders, but have been identified as the most common cause of adverse drug events (ADEs) across various healthcare settings. The National Quality Forum (NQF), in partnership with the Anticoagulation Forum (AC Forum) and with funding from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), has released Advancing Anticoagulation Stewardship: A Playbook, a new, publicly available guide to help healthcare organizations implement evidence-based strategies to promote patient safety in the use of anticoagulant medications.


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