Focus on patient safety - « Laboratory monitoring of anticoagulants (heparins and vitamin K antagonists) - A blood test to prevent blood loss »

Tool to improve professional practice - Posted on Oct 10 2023


Entirely avoidable, the French National Agency for Medicines and Health Products Safety (ANSM) includes errors related to the management of patients treated with anticoagulants in its list of 12 never events (events that should never happen).

The French National Authority for Health has identified several hundred adverse events associated with anticoagulants in the care-related serious adverse event reporting database, as well as in the accreditation of physicians and medical teams programme database. The adverse events occur at every stage in the patient’s care and, in particular, during the laboratory monitoring of anticoagulants.


By sharing feedback from professionals, this Focus on patient safety aims to draw the attention of and raise awareness among healthcare professionals as to the importance of carrying out appropriate laboratory monitoring of anticoagulants (heparins and vitamin K antagonists). 

So it doesn’t happen again

It is highlighted that it is essential to perform regular and rigorous laboratory monitoring. Particular attention should be paid to the timing of blood tests, to take the results into account and to communicate them to all those involved in the patient's care.

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