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Medication Reconciliation to Prevent Errors in a Clinical Setting - Research Paper Example

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Medication Reconciliation to Prevent Errors in a Clinical Setting

In the interests of patient safety it is essential that systems and processes for medical reconciliation are constituted and followed within healthcare organizations. Medical Reconciliation to Prevent Errors The Joint Commission Sentinel Event Alert, Issue 35, 2006, pertains to the use of medication reconciliation in the prevention of medication errors. This paper summarizes the content of the sentinel alert and its relation to the actual practical experience in the care of patients. Included in this paper are my observations of these issues and the practices put in place at Yale New Haven Hospital. From the perspective of the Joint Commission (JTC) patient involvement is essential in the medication reconciliation process. It is quite possible that the state of the patient is such that active and full participation by the patient in this process is not possible. In such cases the patient may seek assistance from another individual, like a family member or surrogate decision maker, in the medical reconciliation process. In any case an essential ingredient of the medical reconciliation process is that it should be a part of every interface of care provided, from the time the patient is admitted to the time the patient is discharged from care (2006). ...
of medications; creation of a list of medications that could be prescribed; making a comparison of the two lists created; taking of clinical decisions on the basis of the results of the comparison; and disseminating the information of the new list of medications to the patient and the care givers of the patient (2006). An accurate and full medical reconciliation process can prevent the occurrence of medication prescribing and administration errors. In the opinion of the Joint Commission medication errors are of serious concern in the light of their frequent occurrence and the fatal consequences to patients. Evidence and experiences from the use of the medical reconciliation process justifies its recommended use as a preventive measure for such errors. The causes of such errors have been identified mainly as improper dose and quantity; omission errors, and prescribing errors, with wrong drug, wrong time, over dose, wrong patient, wrong labelling, and errors in administration techniques and dosage form being other possible causes. These errors occur at every interface of patient care (2006). Risk mitigating strategies include the development of systems and practices within a healthcare organization that ensures that the medical reconciliation occurs in full and across every interface of patient care. In view of this the Joint Commission requires that a process for receiving and compiling a full list of all the current medications of the patient at the time of admission of the patient, with the involvement of the patient. Such a compilation also consists of a comparison of the possible medications from the organization that may be added to the list. A full list of the patient’s medication is to be communicated to the next service provider of care, whenever is ...Show more

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Medication Reconciliation to Prevent Errors in a Clinical Setting Linda Taylor Gateway Community College Nursing 205 Manage and Trends Fall 2011 Abstract Medication reconciliation in the prevention of medication errors is the subject of the Joint Commission Sentinel Event Alert, Issue, 35, 2006…
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