Safer administration of insulin: summary of a safety report from the National Patient Safety Agency

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This safety report, from the National Patient Agency (NPSA), looks at the summary evidence for safe administration of insulin.

Insulin has been identified as one of the top 10 high risk medicines worldwide. Errors are common and a national audit of over 14, 000 inpatients with diabetes in England and Wales showed prescribing errors in 19.5% of cases.

From August 2003 to August 2009, the National Patient Safety Agency (NPSA) received 3881 incident reports involving wrong insulin doses. It identified two common preventable errors relating to dose errors: using abbreviations when prescribing insulin; and failing to use insulin syringes. 

This safety report published in the British Medical Journal looks at the summary evidence for safe administration of insulin.

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