Published Online: Thursday, March 1, 2007

A new California regulation aims to reduce medication errors in the state's hospitals and to free pharmacists for involvement in direct patient care.

The new law will allow general acute care hospitals to employ specially trained pharmacy technicians to check medication cassettes and the work of other technicians.

Traditionally, any tasks handled by a pharmacy technician relative to dispensing a prescription had to be verified and documented in writing by a pharmacist.

The new regulation, however, will allow hospital pharmacists to dedicate their time to activities established to reduce errors.

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