Medication Errors. Who all should be informed?

  1. I am courious how medication errors are handled in other county jails. I recently ran into a problem where an inmate had been given a double dose of his medication. When it happened the nurse came to me and explained how it happened as she is very new to jail work and was not aware how to report this incident. I called our adminstrator and called the doctor. We had the inmate brought into the medical departmnet for observation per the doctors order, filled out an incident report and charted on the inmate for 24 hours. the medication he received was an antidepressent. I later found out from a not so nice phone conversation with our ward clerk that I was to report this to the officer who brought the inmate to medical because she was to let the Captain of the jail know what happened. I only told the officer the inmate was to have his vital signs observed for 24 hours because of his medication and then would be returned to the housing unit. I work for a private contract company and did not feel it was my place to report this incident to anyone other than my adminstrator and the doctor and I did not feel it was anyones business this nurse had made a med. errror. Now I am on the .... list because I did not share every detail with this officer. Any advice on this? Was there a better way I could have handled this ?
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  2. 1 Comments

  3. by   sjoe
    1) Every facility has its own policies and procedures on this topic. what do they say? Usually it is a matter of filling out an incident report and notifying the MD, which you did.
    2) It is hardly the business of the captain of the jail either, since medications and treatments are supposed to be privileged information. (HIPPA rules, after all.)
    3) Nurses don't take orders from ward clerks, however important these clerks might think they are.
    4) Your private contract company should be able to resolve any lingering questions you have.

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