Medication Errors Essay

1336 words - 5 pages

For many patients the scariest part of being in the hospital is having to rely on other people to control your life changing decisions. One large part of this is the medications one is given while in our care. I can only imagine what it must be like for patients to have a stranger to come in and start administering drugs to me. This would be especially scary if I did not know what these medications did, or what negative effects could be caused by taking them. Unfortunately, the fear of medication errors that many patients have are not unfounded. Estimates range from 1.5 to 66 million patients a year have medication errors occur while they are in the care of health care professionals. Considering all of the technology we have at our finger tips today one would think that we would be beyond this magnitude of errors by now. However, you always have to account for the human element involved in all of these situations.
I recently read an article trying to fully understand how we can eliminate as many medication errors as possible. The article titled ASHP Guidelines on preventing Medication Errors in Hospitals that outlined many different avenues that both individuals and organizations can take to reduce the occurrence of medication errors. Overall, I must say that I agree with most of the methods described in the writing. One of the most notable suggestions I read was under the Organizational and Departmental Recommendations section. It stated "Care and consideration must be given in hiring and assigning personnel involved in medication ordering, preparation, dispensing, administration, and patient education. Policies and procedures should be developed that ensure adequate personnel selection, training, supervision, and evaluation. This would include the need to ensure proper interviewing, orientation, evaluation of competency, supervision, and opportunities for continuing professional and technical education (American Society of Hospital Pharmacists, 1993)."
I truly believe that most medication errors are a result of human error, and are not related to much else. When I say this, however, most people would picture the nurse giving the wrong medication due to lack of focus on the tasks at hand. While this could happen, I have noticed during my time at hospitals that the doctor orders are still hand written for the most part. Consequently, they can be very hard to be read legibly much less correctly translated into proper medication dosages. The first suggestion I would give to an organization would be that they required all orders to be submitted securely, by the doctors, to the pharmacy be electronic means.
Computers have evolved at an extremely fast pace in the past few years. We would be at an extreme disadvantage if we did not take the opportunity to use this to our benefit. With the common place of wireless networks and mobile platforms, such as the IPAD, doctors could carry out such changes fairly readily and...

Find Another Essay On Medication Errors

Hospital Nursing and Medication Safety Essay

1051 words - 4 pages , Studdert, Bohmer, Berwick, & Brennan, 2003). A safety culture of the medication safety requires strong, committed leadership, along with engagement and empowerment of the nursing staff. Nowadays, in a culture of medication safety, when an adverse incident occurs, the focus is on what went wrong rather than who caused the problem. Therefore, a balance is achieved between not blaming individuals for errors and not tolerating egregious behaviour

Improving the Quality of Nursing Care

2358 words - 9 pages , Turunen, Saano, and Vehviläinen-Julkunen evaluated the views of nurses, physicians, and pharmacists from Finnish University hospital. Their study focused on the prevention of medication errors. The data for this study was gathered from an online database via the Kuopio University Hospital. This database allowed participants to provide their opinions on how certain incidents could be avoided. All people involved in patient care could use the forum

Risk Management Issue

1536 words - 6 pages Risk management is described as "a program directed toward identifying, evaluating, and taking corrective action against potential risks that could lead to injury" (Shannon & Decker, 2009).Medication errors remain one of the most frequent problems that put patients at risk in healthcare (Joint Commission, 2009). In 2005 The Joint Commission issued The National Patient Safety Goals of which medication reconciliation is one of the mandatory

Risk Management

1787 words - 7 pages errors. Bridge (2007) noted that The Department of Health reported "medication errors in particular account for 10 - 20% of all adverse events leading to injury or loss of life."Heparin Use in Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)The exact number of medication errors in the NICU is not known, but errors do occur frequently. This is in part due to the complexity of medications used in the NICU, the high frequency at which premature infants are

Use of Barcode Technology in the NICU

1275 words - 6 pages , any incidence can have devastating consequences to both the infant and the family (Drenckpohl, 2007). Even in the event that there was no harmful outcome, the emotional distress to the parents cannot be underestimated. For this reason, it is imperative that a process which reduces the incidence of breast milk mismanagement be implemented in all NICUs regardless of their size. Much attention is given to administration errors in medication

Polypharmacy in Older Adults

1242 words - 5 pages serious side effects, poor adherence, adverse drug reactions and adverse drug interactions. Adverse drug events or medication errors that result from polypharmacy can often be difficult to predict and prevent. According to an article posted in the American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy (2012), drug –drug interactions may lead to increased toxicity levels when taken together. An example is the interaction of two cardiovascular medications

The National Patient Safety Goals Are Effective

1610 words - 6 pages in providing safe and effective care of the highest quality and value” (The Joint Commission, 2011). The National Patient Safety Goals were implemented 2002. The goals later became effective January 1, 2003 to address specific areas of concern in regards to patient safety. Upon implementation, these goals have been effective in reducing the number of medication errors, improving communication between healthcare providers, and reducing hospital

Legal Incident Reporting Requirements: Vasopressin Overdose

2130 words - 9 pages prescribing error, pharmacy issues also figured prominently in this error, the computerized physician order entry (CPOE) system that did not eliminate medication errors and domino effect to the nurse that started the medication that eventually caused the patient to have an MI. The patient in this case was receiving the medication vasopressin, at a dose of 0.4 units/min, a dosage used for gastrointestinal hemorrhage and variceal bleeding rather than the

Common Source of Error in Medical Laboratory

1701 words - 7 pages this phase will result in a wrong diagnosis, the patient will have the wrong medication. Moreover, pre-analytical errors are caused by nurses, physicians, and medical technicians (Sharma, 2009). In other words, pre-analytical errors occur before the specimen comes to the laboratory department that is considered challenges to the MLS. Limitations: Most of the retrieved articles did not provide enough examples that might help in the illustration for

Mistakes in the Medical Field

1257 words - 5 pages single operation (Carpenter, 2008). Many errors also occur in communication between healthcare providers, poor documentation, poor handwriting, not labeling medication correctly, or not following an established facility’s policies and procedures (Dovey, Kuzel, Phillips, and Woolf, 2004). Any change from established policies or procedures is considered an error, whether or not the change resulted in harm (Moridani, and Scott, 2013). Unfortunately

Nursing and Computer Technology

1426 words - 6 pages adherence. One such standard is the appropriate treatment for patients with an acute myocardial infarction. The CPOE can be constructed to suggest the appropriate orders such as beta-blockers and aspirin, which keeps the physician in compliance with the federal standards. Electronic medication administration record is another application that has been implemented in an effort to reduce medication errors. According to Seibert, Maddox, Flynn and

Similar Essays

Patient Falls And Medication Errors Essay

1177 words - 5 pages Issue/Problem of Interest Falls are the second most common adverse event within health care institutions following medication errors, and an estimated 30% of hospital-based falls result in serious injury. The severity of this problem led the Joint Commission to make reducing the risk of patient injuries from falls a national patient safety goal for hospitals in 2009 (AHRQ, 2006). Falls are a leading cause of hospital-acquired injury and

A Literature Review About Mecication Errors And The 6 Rights To Medication Administration.

1946 words - 8 pages TABLE OF CONTENTSIntroduction...............................................................................................3Summaries of Journal Articles......................................................................3Key Aspects: Medication Errors and their Causes.............................................. 4Impact on Client Care.................................................................................5Strategies to prevent

The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Bar Code Scanning In Medication Administration

1390 words - 6 pages Medication errors are the leading cause of morbidity and preventable death in hospitals (Adams). In fact, approximately 1.5 million Americans are injured each year as a result of medication errors in hospitals (Foote). Not only are medication errors harmful to patients but medication errors are very expensive for hospitals. Medication errors cost America’s health care system 3.5 billion dollars per year (Foote).Errors in medication

The Challanges Of Electronic Prescribing Systems

2236 words - 9 pages Overview: E-prescribing systems enable the electronic transmissions of prescriptions to pharmacies from the provider's office. The promise of e-prescribing in regard to patient safety is reduction in the time gap between point of care and point of service, reduction in medication errors, and improved quality of care. This paper will give a brief overview concentrating on the reduction in medication errors and the challenges that remain with