Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Michael Cohen

How to avoid getting someone else’s medication at the pharmacy

Thursday, August 13, 2015, 8:41 AM
After last week’s blog about possibly getting someone else’s medicine when you or a family member has a prescription dispensed at the pharmacy, I wanted to discuss steps that people can take to detect this type of error and avoid potential harm. This is based on research my organization... Read more

Getting the wrong person’s medicine at the pharmacy

Wednesday, August 5, 2015, 9:21 AM
Giving a correctly dispensed prescription to the wrong pharmacy patient is a common error in community pharmacies. If this has never happened to you, maybe you’re surprised by this fact. But you are more likely to be among the millions of people who have gone home from the pharmacy only to find... Read more

Hospital rapid response teams can save lives

Monday, June 15, 2015, 9:51 AM
Several tragic deaths about 15 years ago were compelling factors that led to patient- and family-initiated “Rapid Response Teams” (RRT) that were mentioned in my June 3, 2015 blog. The first was a tragic death of an 18-month-old child, Josie King, who had been hospitalized for treatment... Read more

When hospitalized, call a hospital Rapid Response Team to address unresolved safety or health concerns

Wednesday, June 3, 2015, 9:18 AM
When people suddenly become ill or injured at home or in the community, they or their families or friends can call 911 for emergency help. But who can a patient or family member call upon once they arrive at the hospital if they feel their condition is seriously deteriorating and nobody is listening?... Read more

Avoid heating up a pain patch

Thursday, May 7, 2015, 9:19 AM
Before leaving the hospital, a woman with bone cancer was given a prescription for a powerful pain medicine, called Duragesic. This is a medicine “patch” or “transdermal system” that adheres to the skin and slowly releases the powerful opioid fentanyl. During her first 2 weeks... Read more

Medicine missteps

Thursday, April 16, 2015, 9:00 AM
When it comes to medicines, you may already know how essential it is to exactly follow the instructions provided by your healthcare provider or on over-the-counter (OTC) Drug Facts labels. But you may be overlooking some habits or beliefs that can keep you from getting the full benefit of your medicines... Read more

Designer pain creams - profitable for compounding pharmacies but risky for patients and children

Wednesday, March 18, 2015, 5:30 AM
Certain pharmacies, known as compounding pharmacies, can mix different ingredients together to produce a patient-specific product. For example, they can prepare a special formulation of a needed medication that replaces an ingredient in a commercially available product to which the patient is allergic... Read more

Pharmacy automatic prescription refills can contribute to medication errors and waste

Tuesday, February 10, 2015, 10:26 AM
When you have a prescription filled regularly for a chronic condition like high blood pressure or diabetes, chances are your pharmacy will ask you to opt in for a service that allows them to automatically refill the prescription before your medication runs out. Once you agree, you will be notified... Read more

Demonstration IV solutions administered to patients

Wednesday, January 14, 2015, 6:23 PM
Back on December 30th, FDA alerted health professionals about a patient who became ill after receiving an IV solution meant for training purposes only. Educators often utilize training products for simulations with students and want these items to look like the real solutions. However, there have been... Read more

For generic Vicodin price, less is more – a lot more $$

Wednesday, January 7, 2015, 11:34 AM
There’s been a lot said recently about generic drug pricing and sticker shock, but the following probably takes the cake. If doctors aren’t careful with prescriptions, patients and insurers can wind up paying exorbitant amounts - unnecessarily. As most readers are aware, a pain medication... Read more
About this blog

Check Up is a blog for savvy health consumers, covering the latest developments, discoveries, and debates from the Philadelphia area and beyond.

Portions of this blog may also be found in the Inquirer's Sunday Health Section.

Charlotte Sutton Health and Science Editor, Philadelphia Inquirer
Tom Avril Inquirer Staff Writer, heart health and general science
Stacey Burling Inquirer Staff Writer, neuroscience and aging
Marie McCullough Inquirer Staff Writer, cancer and women's health
Don Sapatkin Inquirer Staff Writer, public health
David Becker, M.D. Board certified cardiologist, Chestnut Hill Temple Cardiology
Michael R. Cohen, R.Ph. President, Institute for Safe Medication Practices
Daniel R. Hoffman, Ph.D. President, Pharmaceutical Business Research Associates
Hooman Noorchashm, M.D., Ph.D. Cardiothoracic surgeon in the Philadelphia area
Amy J. Reed, M.D., Ph.D. Anesthesiologist and Surgical Intensivist in the Philadelphia Area
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