Guidance on error prevention

Medication errors resulting in adverse drug reactions are an avoidable source of harm to patients. Despite this it is still a global concern. Learn how to prevent unnecessary suffering.

National and regional pharmacovigilance centre staff have priority on our courses. If you can’t access any of the self-paced courses on our learning platform, write to us at

Developed by UMC and the Rabat Collaborating Centre, this instructor-led course gives you the tools you need to help your centre build up a national database to look for signs of harm and reduce medication errors.

Who Is this course for?
National or regional pharmacovigilance centres that are looking to develop procedures for detecting, reporting, analysing, and preventing medication errors.

How will it help me?
This course takes a hands-on, practical approach to working with medication error reports, using real-world cases drawn from your own national database and other sources, so that you can get to work immediately.

What's next?
Hone your signal detection skills with our instructor-led course in case series causality assessment.

Laying the foundations for reducing medication errors – from recognition to prevention

You will study the impact of medication errors and their effect on patients and recognise the importance of identifying and acting on medication errors to avoid preventable adverse drug reactions. The five-week course is split into two parts: understanding, classifying, and coding medication errors, and signal detection, root cause identification, and preventive measures. The core topics include:

  • Prevalence and burden of medication errors Identifying medication errors in ICSRs
  • Classification of medication errors
  • MedDRA coding of medication errors
  • Building up a medication errors database
  • Signal detection
  • Root cause analysis
  • Prevention and risk mitigation for medication errors

This course blends self-paced learning with instructor-led workshops where you will discuss different aspects of medication error reports as a group.

Courses dates and deadlines

When: 26 February to 29 March 2024
Duration: Five weeks part-time. The course takes roughly 30 hours to complete
Cost: Free of charge
Deadline for applications: 26 January 2024 

Places are limited so apply early

Last modified on: February 22, 2024