ASHP Launches Medication Compounding Resource Center
Launched July 1, 2004, the ASHP Compounding Resource Center (www.ashp.org/SterileCPD/) offers information and guidance for pharmacy practitioners to meet the new sterile preparations requirements contained within United States Pharmacopeia (USP) Chapter 797, Pharmaceutical Compounding -- Sterile Preparations.
“This issue is so important to hospital and health-system pharmacists because sterile compounding is directly linked to patient safety and infection control,” said ASHP President T. Mark Woods, Pharm.D., FASHP. “Correctly compounded sterile preparations protect patients from potentially deadly infections and ensure that patients receive the right preparation for their particular conditions.”
The Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) began including elements of Chapter 797 standards in its surveys July 1, 2004. The standards apply to all practice settings in which compounded sterile medications are prepared, stored, and dispensed, including hospitals, ambulatory care clinics, home infusion services, and physicians’ offices.
“This is just one aspect of the coordinated response we’ve developed to USP 797, and another step in our decades-long efforts to help pharmacists confront the challenges of sterile product compounding,” said Henri R. Manasse, Jr., Ph.D., Sc.D., ASHP executive vice president and CEO.
In addition to advising USP on the development of the new standard, ASHP has developed new guidance, produced training materials, and offered educational sessions on sterile compounding. ASHP is also working with affiliated state societies and state boards of pharmacy on revisions to sterile compounding statutes, regulations, and guidelines, and working to increase understanding of congressional staff on compounding issues.
The ASHP Compounding Resource Center features answers to frequently asked questions, compounding-related news stories, quick access to pertinent ASHP guidance and products, a calendar of compounding-related events, and other resources, such as Web links to government agencies and manufacturers. The resource center also highlights ASHP activities and events, including educational sessions at the Society’s national meetings.
“Pharmacists’ knowledge and training make us uniquely qualified to contribute to the safety and success of hospital’s and health-system’s sterile compounding and infection control efforts,” said Woods, adding that ASHP’s resource center “will be an effective tool to help practitioners take stock of current sterile compounding practices, implement improvements, and stay abreast of the latest developments in the field.”
ASHP is the 30,000-member national professional association that represents pharmacists who practice in hospitals, health maintenance organizations, long-term care facilities, home care, and other components of health care systems. ASHP, which has a long and distinguished history of medication error prevention efforts, believes that the mission of pharmacists is to help people make the best use of medicines. Assisting pharmacists in fulfilling this mission is ASHP's primary objective. The Society has extensive publishing and educational programs designed to help members improve their delivery of pharmaceutical care, and it is the national accrediting organization for pharmacy residency and pharmacy technician training programs.