ISMP Calls on Hospitals to Stop Using Insulin Pens

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The Institute for Safe Medication Practices cautioned hospitals to reexamine their use of insulin pens in its newsletter, ISMP Medication Safety Alert!

Due to continuing patient safety problems, ISMP suggests hospitals stop using insulin pens in an inpatient setting, as they were originally intended for ambulatory care. "Other problems such as using pen cartridges as multi-dose vials, the risk of needlestick injuries and user technique errors have also been identified as serious safety concerns with pens used in hospitals," ISMP wrote.

In January, two New York hospitals reported an infection risk due to the use of insulin pens on multiple patients. At Buffalo (N.Y.) VA Medical Center, more than 700 patients could be at risk for HIV, hepatitis B or hepatitis C. At Olean (N.Y.) General Hospital, improper insulin pen reuse put nearly 2,000 patients at risk of infection.

More Articles on Insulin Pen Safety:

Olean General Hospital Notifies Patients of Possible Insulin Pen Reuse
Insulin Pen Reuse at New York Hospital Raises Infection Concerns

7 Recommendations for Coordinating Insulin Administration, Nutritional Therapy

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