After five years of revising the look of drug label inserts, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has finally made a decision. Federal regulators believe the drug labels’ new look will reduce injuries and deaths caused by medication mistakes.
Studies have found, an estimated 300,000 people are injured and nearly 100,000 are killed in hospitals each year as a result of medical errors. Prescribing errors account for a large portion of these deaths and injuries. Less than one in ten physicians actually read the drug labels, which provide the most complete data about a drug risks and uses. The FDA says the revised labels will have more specific prescribing information and be more useful to doctors.
The new drug labels will include:
The rule takes effect on June 30 2006, and all new, approved drugs will be required to have the new label design. Drugs approved within the last five years and those under FDA review will be phased in with the new labels.