Medicines Safety Research Group

MSRT - Medicines Safety Research Group

The Medicines Safety Research Group (MSRG) investigates interventions to improve and optimise the safe use and management of medicines by patients and healthcare professionals. Our research ranges from population level safety of prescribed and over-the-counter use of medicines, to the individual prescriber’s or patient’s use of a medicine.

Group lead

Anthony Cox April 2020

Dr Anthony Cox

Reader in Clinical Pharmacy and Drug Safety
Head of Education (School of Pharmacy)Programme
Director MPharm

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Our research group

The Medicines Safety Research Group (MSRG) undertakes research that adds to the knowledge of medicine-related problems and solutions that can improve the medication process and patient health outcomes. Our work aims to identify contributing factors for sub-optimal medicines use or management, and improve the knowledge of practitioners and patients to improve the use of medicines in society.

Our research ranges from exploring how pharmacovigilance systems can improve the reporting of adverse drug reactions and medication errors, to looking at the safe use of medicines in specialised patient groups such as the frail and those with impaired renal function. We are also interested in how healthcare professionals can both identify and minimise the harms of medication, for example, with initiating optimal monitoring.

The patient experience of the harms of medicines is increasingly valued, which we explore using both quantitative and qualitative methodologies. Patients are the primary decision maker in whether to take a medicine, so we are interested in ensuring harms and benefits of medicines are communicated effectively.

Our research also examines how prescribers carry out the act of prescribing, with a particular emphasis on the interaction of prescribers with electronic prescribing systems and decision support, and how digitisation can optimise thew process and improve decision-making. We also investigate unintended effects of the technology on teamwork and errors.

We help create translatable knowledge that can be used to inform patient care, improve the reporting of adverse effects of medicines and prescribing and administration of medicines.

Current projects


An eLearning programme to improve safety and competency among healthcare professionals around prescribing, therapeutics and medicines management. Script website.

Recent and selected publications

Alruqayb, W.S., Price, M.J., Paudyal, V. Cox A.R. Drug-Related Problems in Hospitalised Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease: A Systematic Review. Drug Saf 2021;44:1041-1058

Sandhu, D, Antolin, AA, Cox, AR, Jones, AM. Identification of different side effects between PARP inhibitors and their polypharmacological multi-target rationale. Br J Clin Pharmacol, 2021; 1- 11.

Cox AR, Ferner R Tramadol: repeated prescriptions and repeated warnings BMJ Evidence-Based Medicine Published Online First: 08 March 2021. doi: 10.1136/bmjebm-2020-111661

Alshahrani, F., Marriott, J.F. & Cox, A.R. A qualitative study of prescribing errors among multi-professional prescribers within an e-prescribing system. Int J Clin Pharm, 2021; 43: 844-892

Rosenbloom CJ, Morley FL, Ahmed I, Cox AR. Oral non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug use in recreational runners participating in Parkrun UK: Prevalence of use and awareness of risk. International Journal of Pharmacy Practice 2020;

O’Donovan B, Rodgers R, Cox A, Krska J. Use of information sources regarding medicine side effects among the general population: A cross-sectional survey. Primary Health Care Research & Development 2019; 20: E153.

Pontefract SK, Hodson J, Slee A, Shah S, Girling AJ, Williams R, Sheikh A, Coleman JJ (2018). Impact of a commercial order entry system on prescribing errors amenable to computerised decision support in the hospital setting: a prospective pre-post study. BMJ Qual Saf. 2018 Sep;27(9):725-736. doi: 10.1136/bmjqs-2017-007135. Epub 2018 Mar 23. PMID: 29572298; PMCID: PMC6109251.

Ferro CJ,  Solkhon F,  Jalal Z,  Al‐Hamid AM,  Jones AM.  Relevance of physicochemical properties and functional pharmacology data to predict the clinical safety profile of direct oral anticoagulants. Pharmacol Res Perspect. 2020; e00603.

Paudyal V, Al-Hamid A, Bowen M, Hadi MA, Hasan SS, Jalal Z, Stewart D. Interventions to improve spontaneous adverse drug reaction reporting by healthcare professionals and patients: systematic review and meta-analysis, Expert Opinion on Drug Safety. 2020; DOI:


Principal Investigators

Anthony Cox

Alan Jones

Vibhu Paudyal

Sarah Pontefract

Postgraduate Researchers

Samantha Own, Birmingham Health Partner Research Fellow, Administrative errors in paediatrics

Wadia Alruqayb, Drug-related problems in Patients with Kidney Disease.

Leeanne Stewart, Drug-related problems associated with monitored dosage systems.