MINISTER for Health Simon Harris has congratulated the Irish Medication Safety Network (IMSN) for its role in creating a patient safety first culture in Ireland.

Opening their ninth annual conference at Farmleigh House in the Phoenix Park, Minister Harris acknowledged the work of the IMSN as a partner in medication safety as being invaluable.  The network continues to enhance learning from medication incidents and share quality improvement initiatives at a national level.

The IMSN formally launched the document Building a Medication Safety Programme in a Hospital in Ireland: Fundamental Steps at the event.  This document provides the foundation for the design of a medication safety programme and has been compiled from first-hand experience from medication safety pharmacists in Irish hospitals, with reference to best international practice.

Minister Harris also noted that the theme of the event is based on that of the WHO’s Third Global Patient Safety Challenge “Medication without Harm” and the Department of Health are keen to continue to work with all stakeholders in addressing this patient safety challenge.

Mr. Paul Tighe, Chair of the IMSN added: “Following on from the HIQA report published in 2018 - Medication Safety monitoring programme in public acute hospitals – an overview of findings, we have a real opportunity to expand clinical pharmacy and the utilization of technologies to progress the five national recommendations identified by HIQA to improve medication safety at a national level.”

The IMSN continues its highly successful series of annual conferences. Friday’s conference was the ninth to take place at Farmleigh House in Dublin’s Phoenix Park. The focus of this year’s event, Medication without Harm, was on addressing the WHO patient safety challenge and sharing novel and innovative practices.

The conference was attended by patient representatives, healthcare professionals in acute care, and representatives of relevant state, professional and academic bodies, who heard that the safe use of medication is a priority for over 40 countries who have committed to this global patient safety challenge.

For further information:

Niamh O’Hanlon E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: +353 1 221 4139

Notes for editors:

Established in 2007, the IMSN is a voluntary independent group of hospital pharmacy based specialists with an interest in medication safety.  The network has representation from all major hospitals in the country, both public and private, reaching over 50 acute health care facilities in Ireland.

The IMSN’s principal aim is to improve patient safety with regard to the use of medicines through improved sharing of information throughout the acute healthcare system and the adoption of national and global initiatives to help minimise risks to patients.

To this end, it has published multiple medication safety alerts, guidelines and briefing documents, available on its website, www.imsn.ie<http://www.imsn.ie/>.  It also liaises with relevant state bodies and working groups to develop national patient safety initiatives.  Its members are active in developing patient safety initiatives within Irish acute hospitals and are also involved with Irish universities in delivering medication safety education modules as part of undergraduate medical, nursing and pharmacy degree courses and post-graduate programmes.