2016 PULSE of NY Spring Symposium to Tackle Medication-Related Harm

Keynote speaker Michael R. Cohen

Annual patient safety conference to focus on medication errors and misuse in 2016.

​Medicines can cure us or help us get through illness, injury, or surgery. Today’s medications are more sophisticated, effective and cleverly designed than ever. But if misused or abused they also have the potential to cause serious injury, even death.

Each year patient safety advocacy and education group PULSE of NY holds a Spring Symposium focusing on a different aspect of preventing harm to patients. This year’s event, to be held April 18, 2016 at the Holiday Inn in Plainview, NY, will have as its theme Medication Safety: It Starts Before the Prescription. The event will gather stakeholders including healthcare professionals, patients and their families, and related organizations to discuss ways of improving our use of medications.

"The issue of painkiller use leading to heroin addiction — unlike that of medication errors within hospitals — is one that people in their own communities. . .can and must do something about."

Ilene Corina, President, PULSE of NY

Its keynote speaker will be Michael R. Cohen, RPh, MS, ScD (hon.), DPS (hon.), FASHP, president of The Institute for Safe Medication Practices, (ISMP) a nonprofit healthcare organization that specializes in understanding the causes of medication errors.

Medication issues aren’t found only in hospitals and doctors’ offices. Addiction to prescription painkillers and other drugs is rising fast and is leading to a dramatic increase in heroin addiction. According to a recent CDC report,[1] heroin use among people 18-25 has more than doubled in the past decade, spreading from inner cities to suburbs and rural areas, and into populations with historically low rates of addiction. And, says the report, 45% of people who used heroin were also addicted to opioid painkillers. The road to heroin often starts with a legitimate prescription for pain relief.

According to PULSE of NY President and founder Ilene Corina, “The issue of painkiller use leading to heroin addiction — unlike that of medication errors within hospitals — is one that people in their own communities, educated and made aware by organizations like PULSE of NY, can and must do something about.”

Reporters are invited to find out more about the problem of medication error and abuse by talking to Ilene Corina. Please call (516) 579-4711 or email info@pulseofny.org.

Registration for the Spring Symposium is now open, with an early-bird price of $50 for reservations made before March 20, 2016. (After that date, the cost is $65.) Click here to register: https://www.research.net/r/2016MedicationSafetyRegister

Sponsorship opportunities are available as well. http://www.pulseofny.org/patientSafetySymposium16sponsors.html#sponsor

[1] www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/pdf/2015-07-vitalsigns.pdf