Quality & Safety

Reconciliation and Disposal of Oral Medication: Creating a Safe Process for Clinical Research Personnel

Doyle Bosque

Sheryl G. Forbes

Erica N. Ward

Joelle Delaney

G. Tobin Meyers

clinical research nurses, oral investigational medications, safe handling, policies
CJON 2021, 25(5), 587-590. DOI: 10.1188/21.CJON.587-590

Clinical research nurses and non-licensed study coordinators observed variation in procedures for reconciliation and disposal of oral investigational medications across the institution. An academic medical center implemented a quality improvement project to standardize the process of reconciliation and disposal of oral investigational medications. An interprofessional collaborative workgroup was formed, which led to multiple interventions to standardize practice, including revision of three policies and procedures, redesign of specific work areas to establish drug-counting rooms, review of personal protective equipment requirements, revision of educational training, and regular cleaning of potentially contaminated workstations.


  • Global use of oral investigational agents has grown exponentially during the past two decades.
  • Clinical research programs that provide oversight for medication administration require rigorous processes for reconciliation and safe handling of oral agents to protect staff.
  • Educational initiatives and systematic internal policy updates support a culture of quality and safety in cancer care research settings.
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