Article Text

Download PDFPDF
A lesson for our times
  1. J W Sender,
  2. A Crichton-Harris
  1. 295 Indian Road, Toronto, Ontario M6R 2X5, Canada;

    Statistics from

    Request Permissions

    If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.

    In England in 1857 a Bill was introduced into Parliament to regulate the sale of poisons. One of the clauses in this proposed Bill ordered that:

    ... all medicines containing any poison should be supplied in quadrangular blue glass bottles, labelled in conspicuous capitals, white on black ground, POISON, the word POISON being also embossed in raised letters on the four sides of the bottle”.1

    The design was clearly the result of analysis and thought applied to the problem of reducing what we now call “medication errors”. It is well human engineered:

    1. The black ground of the printed word POISON serves by its blackness as a warning. …

    View Full Text