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Farmacia Hospitalaria

On-line version ISSN 2171-8695Print version ISSN 1130-6343


RUIZ-RAMOS, Jesús  and  GRUPO DE TRABAJO REDFASTER DE LA SOCIEDAD ESPANOLA DE FARMACIA HOSPITALARIA et al. Prevalence of adverse drug events in emergency departments. FARM-URG multi-center project. Farm Hosp. [online]. 2021, vol.45, n.4, pp.176-179.  Epub Jan 16, 2023. ISSN 2171-8695.


Adverse drug events are a well-known cause of emergency department admissions. FARM-URG is a project promoted by the REDFASTER working group of the Spanish Society of Hospital Pharmacy. Its aim is to evaluate these adverse events through regular prevalence measurements. The present study shows the results of the first observations. The goal was to determine the prevalence of adverse drug events with respect to the total number of patients treated in emergency departments and carry out a description of the different events identified.


This is a multicenter cross-sectional study carried out in the emergency room of 13 Spanish hospitals. The identification and registration of patients were obtained from the emergency department patient census at the time of the first prevalence measurement (16 June 2020). The REDCap® platform was used for patient registration.


The 2020 FARM-URG registry, which included 13 hospitals, evaluated 772 patients, of whom 57 (7.4%) consulted for adverse drug events. Antithrombotic drugs were responsible for most of these episodes, acenocoumarol being the main drug involved (22.8%). Nine (15.8%) adverse drug events were caused by inappropriate drug prescriptions according to the STOPP-START criteria. Nineteen (33.0%) patients returned to the emergency service within 30 days from discharge.


Adverse drug events are a frequent cause of emergency department visits and are commonly associated with a significant percentage of re-visits. The FARM-URG project has been created with the purpose of obtaining dynamic and updated information on such events.

Keywords : Drug therapy/adverse effects; Emergency medical services; Polypharmacy; Frail elderly; Anticoagulants.

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