This week the FDA launched a program aimed at reducing the number of injuries caused by preventable medication errors. The FDA is currently working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to come up with accurate estimates of the number of deaths due to medication misuse.
A large area of concern is the possible interactions of over the counter medications. On the heels of the reexamination of the appropriate 24-hour dosages of acetometaphine, the FDA wants to focus on informing consumers of appropriate dosages and making those dosages easier to determine. New guidelines have recently been issued for medications that come with measuring devices such as cups or droppers.
The Safe Use Initiative is aimed at cutting in half the estimated 100,000 hospitalizations that occur each year from accidental and intentional misuse of medication. The hope is that by combining consumer education efforts with examination and revision of package and instructional standards the potential for misuse will drop dramatically.