Young Patients Need Better Care, says UK Health Agency

17 June 2009 (Last Updated June 17th, 2009 18:30)

A high rate of administration errors is one area of patient safety for children and young people that needs to be improved, according to the UK's National Patient Safety Agency (NPSA). The NPSA has released a set of recommendations after publishing its Review of Patient Safety for C

A high rate of administration errors is one area of patient safety for children and young people that needs to be improved, according to the UK's National Patient Safety Agency (NPSA).

The NPSA has released a set of recommendations after publishing its Review of Patient Safety for Children and Young People that studied incidents between October 2007 and September 2008.

The report said that about 10,000 safety alerts for medication errors were being issued every year in the UK's National Health Service, which included grave errors while administering drug doses.

Around 60,000 alerts were registered between October 2007 and September 2008 for patients aged under 18 although the final figure is likely to be much higher as incidents are reported on a voluntary basis.

Medication incidents were the most commonly reported incident type for children at 17%, followed by treatment or procedure incidents constituting 13%, and patient accidents accounting for 11%, the report said.

NPSA advises an open policy and root cause analysis procedures.