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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 18. Professional And Occupational Licensing
Agency 110. Board of Pharmacy
Chapter 20. Regulations Governing the Practice of Pharmacy

18VAC110-20-418. Continuous quality improvement programs.

A. Notwithstanding practices constituting unprofessional practice indicated in 18VAC110-20-25, any pharmacy that actively reports dispensing errors and the analysis of such errors to a patient safety organization consistent with § 54.1-3434.03 of the Code of Virginia and 18VAC110-20-10 shall be deemed in compliance with this section. A record indicating the date a report was submitted to a patient safety organization shall be maintained for 12 months from the date of reporting. If no dispensing errors have occurred within the past 30 days, a zero report with date shall be recorded on the record.

B. Pharmacies not actively reporting to patient safety organizations, consistent with § 54.1-3434.03 and 18VAC110-20-10, shall implement a program for continuous quality improvement in compliance with this section.

1. Notification requirements:

a. A pharmacy intern or pharmacy technician who identifies or learns of a dispensing error shall immediately notify a pharmacist on duty of the dispensing error.

b. A pharmacist on duty shall appropriately respond to the dispensing error in a manner that protects the health and safety of the patient.

c. A pharmacist on duty shall immediately notify the patient or the person responsible for administration of the drug to the patient and communicate steps to avoid injury or mitigate the error if the patient is in receipt of a drug involving a dispensing error, that may cause patient harm or affect the efficacy of the drug therapy. Additionally, reasonable efforts shall be made to determine if the patient self-administered or was administered the drug involving the dispensing error. If it is known or reasonable to believe the patient self-administered or was administered the drug involving the dispensing error, the pharmacist shall immediately assure that the prescriber is notified.

2. Documentation and record requirements; remedial action:

a. Documentation of the dispensing error must be initiated as soon as practical, not to exceed three days from identifying the error. Documentation shall include, at a minimum, a description of the event that is sufficient to allow further investigation, categorization, and analysis of the event.

b. The pharmacist-in-charge or designee shall perform a systematic, ongoing analysis, as defined in 18VAC110-20-10, of dispensing errors. An analysis of each dispensing error shall be performed within 30 days of identifying the error.

c. The pharmacist-in-charge shall inform pharmacy personnel of changes made to pharmacy policies, procedures, systems, or processes as a result of the analysis.

d. Documentation associated with the dispensing error need only to be maintained until the systematic analysis has been completed. Prescriptions, dispensing information, and other records required by federal or state law shall be maintained accordingly.

e. A separate record shall be maintained and available for inspection to ensure compliance with this section for 12 months from the date of the analysis of dispensing errors and shall include the following information:

(1) Dates the analysis was initiated and completed;

(2) Names of the participants in the analysis;

(3) General description of remedial action taken to prevent or reduce future errors; and

(4) A zero report with date shall be recorded on the record if no dispensing errors have occurred within the past 30 days.

Statutory Authority

§§ 54.1-2400 and 54.1-3307 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 12, Issue 21, eff. August 2, 1996; amended Virginia Register Volume 31, Issue 7, eff. December 31, 2014.

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