Using Drugs Safely

Safe Use Initiative spreads awareness of dangers of drug use

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) Some drugs are good for you and others can be addicting, but too much of any drug can be detrimental. Each drug is different, and it's important that consumers are aware of potential dangers.

An abundance of drugs have hit the market for a number of problems - whether it's to cure a disease, get rid of a headache or to relieve flu symptoms. For just about anything that ails you, there's a drug available - either by prescription or over the counter. In both cases, it’s important to understand and appropriately use drugs to prevent harm from medication.

"Read drug labels to know what you're taking."

Researchers have found is that 50 percent of complications that come from medication can be completely avoided. To combat these preventable problems, The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have started the Safe Use Initiative.

The goals for the Initiative are to:

  • Identify medication-related harm that can be prevented
  • Develop strategies to minimize potential harm
  • Measure the success of this intervention

Karen Weiss, M.D., director of the Safe Use Initiative says the program is different because it involves the entire health care industry - physicians, nurses, pharmacies, hospitals, health insurers and even patients and consumers.

The Safe Use Initiative offers many ways to reduce and prevent medicinal harm like removing abbreviations on prescription labels. This will allow patients and consumers to better understand what's actually going into their bodies so the drugs aren’t accidentally misused or abused.

More are being added to the Initiative plan to help consumers get a better grasp on how to use drugs healthfully.

Reviewed by: 
Review Date: 
July 1, 2011
Last Updated:
July 6, 2011