FDA to emphasize safety in drug naming

7/30/2008

WASHINGTON The Food and Drug Administration plans to change the way it approves names of new drugs.

The Division of Medication Error Prevention has historically checked the names of drugs to ensure they were different enough from the names of existing drugs to prevent medication errors, though other reviewing divisions could overrule its recommendations. Now, the division may have more power and may have the final say.

The goal, the FDA said, was to improve drug safety by reducing the risk of medication errors related to confusion between drug names.

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