Failure Mode Effects Analysis (FMEA)
Conducting an FMEA can identify opportunities for labeling-related errors. The FMEA should address each step of the process that is impacted by labeling. Begin by observing compounding personnel in the cleanroom. Identify each point in their workflow where a problem could develop. This observation process should span different shifts and staff members to determine procedural consistency.
In addition, observe the stocking and picking processes in action to determine where a mistake is likely to occur. Watch for every step that requires your staff to make a decision as this provides the opportunity for human error to occur. Pay particular attention to:
- Drugs that are labeled with similar colors
- Look-alike, sound-alike drugs
- Clutter in the storage and dispensing areas
- The potential for drugs to fall from one bin into another
- The effects of high-volume periods on the pharmacy staff
- Workflow where multiple products occupy the same work space1
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