ROCKVILLE, Md. — U.S. Pharmacopeia, a non-profit public health standards-setting organization, has called on prescribers and pharmacists to include an "indication for use" on prescriptions. Indication for use is a phrase that signals why the patient is taking the drug and could prevent medication errors. The outreach comes after USP released its Medmarx Data Report, which revealed that 1,470 different drugs have been implicated in medication errors due to brand and/or generic names that look or sound alike. However, due to widespread underreporting of incidents, the study's authors believe that the number of adverse events resulting from look-alike/sound-alike errors is actually understated. USP's Medmarx is an anonymous, Internet-accessible program used by hospitals to report, track and analyze medication errors. For this year's report, USP reviewed more than 26,000 records submitted to the database from 2003 to 2006.
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