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Increased number of prescription drug incidents and deaths reported

The Institute for Safe Medication Practices, a group of scientists utilized by the hospital and pharmacology industry to identify drug safety issues and trends, reported that the number of drug reactions and deaths was up significantly in 2008.  They said federal data identified almost 5,000 drug-related deaths and almost 21,000 reports of serious drug reactions.  The two drugs involved in the most safety incidents were contaminated Heparin [imported from China] and Chantix--a new anti-smoking drug put on the market by Pfizer.  The latter drug was the subject of the most reported incidents and has been linked to "vivid dreams, psychotic and suicidal behavior".

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