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Introduction to sterile products

Why are sterile products important?

This week you will meet Shao Chin Chiang, who is the Deputy Director of Pharmacy at the Koo Foundation Sun Yat-Sen Cancer Center which is a cancer specialized medical center in Taiwan. Deputy Chiang will explore sterile products, which are very essential in medical treatments. It could be harmful to the patients, if the quality of product is lower than required standards.

Sterile products are very essential in medical treatments. It could be harmful to the patients, if the quality of product is lower than required standards.

We know human being has several layers of protective barrier to prevent microorganisms from entering our body, but sometimes we need to penetrate the protective barrier to administer drugs. These routes of administration require the drug itself and device to deliver the drug sterile, otherwise, infections could occur and may harm the patients. Parenteral and ophthalmic routes, and irrigation of inner organs should all use sterile products. These sterile products occupy very high portion of high-risk medications. May be related to their narrow therapeutic window, the route-related reasons, and the mixture of different drugs. The safety of sterile drug therapy also depends on who prepares the drug, most experts would agree that pharmacy centralized preparation is safer. The contamination and dose errors could both occur and cause patient harm. Pharmacy staff’s complacency sometimes play a role in causing errors. In this week, we are going to introduce how we prepare sterile products in hospitals.

First, we will explain the importance of sterile products. Why it is important? What makes it so important? Then, we will discuss the principles of sterile product preparation. This will include the dispensing environment control. We will explain the primary, secondary, and the requirement from guideline. Compounding personnel is also very critical to the sterile products. We will elaborate the training, the behavior and garbing. Finally, the final product after compounding needs to be handled appropriately, including labelling, accuracy, and storage. I will also share the history of sterile product preparation in Taiwan and the current and recommendations to the hospital accreditation standards.

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Essentials of Good Pharmacy Practice: The Basics

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