Tuesday, August 25, 2015

How to Prevent Medication Errors?

Today when I went to the ward, I came across a student loading an injection. Of course she was under the supervision of the nurse responsible for that patient.
I went close by and asked the student slowly ‘What is the name of the patient? For whom are you loading the drug? What is the name of the injection”?
She was just a second year student. But to my surprise she didn’t know answer to all the three questions.
She was blindly following the instruction of the nurse without even reading the label of the drug. I explained to her that she should be more careful and follow all the steps of medication administration

So what are the precautions to prevent medication errors?

  • Read the prescription and make sure that you reconstitute the correct drug
  • Check the name of the patient; you can ask a conscious patient, or you can check the patient’s name tag.
  • Check the dosage of the drug. Larger dosages may result in some side effects; smaller dosages may be inadequate to treat the patient
  • Check the route. A patient may have intravenous lines, arterial lines or intracranial pressure monitoring lines etc. Please stop a moment and make sure you have taken the right route for medication administration. Otherwise it may result in serious complications.
  • If it is oral administration, please make sure the patient swallows the drug nad does not keep it under the tongue or within the cheeks and spit it later.
  • After the drug is administered, please record it carefully and legibly with the name of the drug, doage, route and date and time

Bedside nursing is the most rewarding experience, a nurse can have. Enjoy it

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