Nurses' Responsibility in the Prevention of Medication Errors (Author’s name) (Institutional Affiliation) Abstract There is no doubt that Nurses play a significant role when it comes to patient safety, with regard to medication. In fact, a vast majority of day to day functions undertaken by nurses directly impact the safety off the care recipients within an organization…
Despite the fact that medication error prevention necessitates holistic action of all disciplines within the healthcare domain, nurses have specific roles hey can play in ensuring these errors are abated if not completely prevented. The paper herein discusses some of the responsibilities nurses are charged with to overcome the prime causes and prevent errors in medication. Overcoming inadequate education, training, and orientation Nurses need to be confident about the knowledge they have ass pertains the administration of medication as well as limitations and functions of devices used in administering medication. In the event that they are not comfortable with any aspect regarding administration of medication, they ought to request ancillary training prior to administering drugs. In addition, they need to have knowledge on and make use of time-honored approaches to reduce the occurrence of these errors. One approach of ensuring that the patient is safeguarded against sentinels in medication is to for nurses to ensure that they have a command of training in the careful verification of every care recipient’s dose of medication against their clinical records (Garber, Gross, & Slonim, 2010). Moreover, they ought to advocate for unit dose systems of administration to facilitate efficiency and limit errors. These systems eliminate multiple doses as well requirements of reconstituting medications. By double-checking the systems, nurses effectively minimize the chance that errors of assumption may occur. Overcoming failures in Communication As valuable and educated members of the healthcare fraternity, nurses ought to be comfortable about questioning pharmacists and physicians about their choice of medications, the doses, the administration routes, reactions, and interactions. Nurses should raise questions to all involved parties to clarify their concerns, before going ahead to administer medication as instructed. They should also clarify orders. More often than not, nurses struggle to make sense out of illegible handwriting and fill out incomplete orders. Prior to administering medication, the nurse needs to ensure that all orders are complete and have been clarified. They have a responsibility to comply with the policies of the organization as afar as safeguarding verbal orders is concerned; for instance spelling or repeating names of drugs and their doses. The clarification of orders is of particular significance within settings in which pharmacists have no opportunity of reviewing he order given by the physician. For instance, nurses in behavioral healthcare, homecare institutions and long-term care regularly communicate orders given by the physician to pharmacists located in a different area via telephone (Prevost 2002). Another responsibility is taking extra caution in light of medications prone to error by increasing communication. Professional literature concerned with health is inundated with reports on medications renowned for having frequent errors in administration. With reference to the institute of Safe Medication Practice (ISMP), the five medications that raise a lot off concern include narcotics and opiates, insulin, injectable potassium concentrate, sodium chloride solutions, and intravenous anticoagulants. As such, nurses need to work ...
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