Unnecessary use of medications exceeded $200 billion in 2012, amounting to an estimated 10 million hospital admissions, 78 million outpatient treatments, 246 million prescriptions, and 4 million emergency department visits annually. (IMS institute)
Adverse drug events (ADEs) result in more than 807,000 injuries and deaths in the US in 2014 (FDA).
In the UK, 23,000 death anually.
With the increase in medication exposure and an ever aging American population, identifying and preventing harm caused by ADEs is becoming a growing concern for public health and patient safety.
In the US, the Joint Commission established national patient safety goals requiring each healthcare organization to implement comprehensive medication reconciliation at every transition point along the continuum of care (which include admission, discharge and transfer).