The report shows that while the total number of drug discrepancies notified to the Commission by WA Health is small compared to the millions of drug transactions each year in WA hospitals, it appears that theft and misuse of dangerous drugs by employees is an ongoing problem.
Further to that, the Commission remains concerned about the level and nature of unexplained drug discrepancies in our hospitals, the failure by employees to make notifications, the way in which they are investigated by WA Health, and some of the conclusions that are reached regarding the reasons for the discrepancies.
The report outlines nine recommendations which the Commission hopes will assist WA Health’s five Health Service Providers, who are responsible for the management and security of these drugs, in mitigating the risk of serious misconduct that is inherent when dealing with drugs that are addictive and dangerous.
The recommendations include a review of policies to ensure that drug management; recording and reporting of discrepancies is consistent across WA Health; that there is immediate reporting of drug discrepancies; and that ongoing education and training of staff in drug management is implemented.
The Commission proposes to further report on the implementation of its recommendations in a year’s time.
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