Risk and safety management in infertility and assisted reproductive technology

A review of various aspects of risk and safety management in ART.

David Meldrum, M.D., Dominique de Ziegler, M.D.

Volume 100, Issue 6, Pages 1497-1498, December 2013


Drs. Meldrum and de Ziegler contrast medicine with the ultra-safe industry of aviation. Analogous to the “right patient, right side, and right organ” procedures already instituted widely throughout medicine, they emphasize the extreme importance and methods for identification and tracking of specimens and recipients for assisted reproductive technology (ART) procedures. One of the authors describes his experience with a formal “ISO” accreditation process that standardizes most aspects of risk and safety management. Because risk and safety management has yet to be commonly extended into physicians’ offices and that is where ART procedures are usually recommended and carried out, detailed suggestions are offered regarding ways to reduce risk and maximize safety in that environment. Finally, a suggestion is made for establishment of a Clinical Safety Board for ART so adverse events are reported and investigated, promoting educative efforts and preventive strategies to enhance future patient safety.

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