Center for Medication Safety and Efficacy Names First Endowed Chair

March 10, 2010

Medication errors can be costly to hospitals and harmful to patients—sometimes even deadly. Which is why the SmartState Center for Medication Safety and Efficacy is working to improve medication safety through research. The Center recently announced it has recruited Dr. Charles L. Bennett to serve as the endowed chair in pharmacoepidemiology and economics.

The SmartState Center for Medication Safety and Efficacy is one of 12 SmartState Centers supported by Health Sciences South Carolina, a first in the nation statewide research collaborative composed of Clemson University, the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC), the University of South Carolina (USC), Greenville Health System, Palmetto Health, and Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System.

The research conducted at the SmartState Center for Medication Safety and Efficacy will focus on identifying the incidence and significance of adverse drug events that occur with prescription and nonprescription drugs. Under the direction of Bennett, the Center’s two partner organizations, MUSC and USC, will seek to develop strategies to reduce medication errors and related costs.

Bennett will hold his position at USC. Prior to accepting the endowed chair, Bennett spent more than 20 years as a hematologist and oncologist researching pharmaceutical safety and efficacy. Since 1987, the National Institutes of Health, the National Cancer Institute, and the U.S. Department of Defense have supported his research. Notably Bennett’s work involved the creation of the Research on Adverse Drug Events and Reports program, an academic pharmaceutical safety program responsible for the identification and reporting of 43 potentially fatal adverse drug reactions.

Bennett earned his medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania and his Master’s degree and PhD from the RAND Pardee Graduate School in Santa Monica, CA.

“The recruitment of Charles Bennett is a coup for South Carolina’s growing health care and healthcare research industry. It proves what a tremendous magnet for talent Health Sciences South Carolina and the SmartState Program are,” said HSSC President and CEO Jay Moskowitz. “Dr. Bennett’s research will help South Carolina hospitals and those across the country reduce medication errors, improve patient safety and lower healthcare costs.”