med aides

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    Help! I just started a new postion as a nurse manager for an ICF-MR & HCS group home setting. 2 med aides provide direct care as well as give meds. I need to know what they can and can't do within their education/area of practice. I'm needing to enlist their help in other areas of care. Also I'm not really sure what meds they can give and the ones that they can't give. On any new med given to the client, does the LVN need to give the initial dose? Where can I get this info?

    Thanks for your help. This is my first time on this site and first time in a chat room!
  2. 9 Comments so far...

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    I also work in an ICF-MR residential home. The best advise I can give you is contact your board of nursing or the state inspectors for your facilty. Both of those places would be a good place to start. Hope this helps.
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    I also work as an Rn in a ICF for the mentally retarded. The staff take a medication course when they are hired included in that course is the medication that they cannot give. For instance in our facility male employees cannot give vaginal suppositories to female patients. Staff cannot give narcotic prn pain medication. They also need permission to give over the counter prn medication from a nurse. The facility should have this all out lined and I would surely ask for it. You must have a director of nursing.
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    I am an LPN working in an ICF-MR. We have TMA's who give all the meds. They are required to take a class that is offered at the Technical college. They then know what their scope of practice is. I would advise you to get in touch with your local technical college to see if they offer this class and if so they would be able to help you set some guidelines.
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    They can give all PO meds. Most of the new MD orders need to be taken by the LPN on duty. Most of the med techs in the group home that I work in have been through a 4-5 week session before they can give any meds. The RN has to do an observation with them and certify them in order for them to pass meds. They do make out the med sheets every month and the LPN will verify them after. We have g-tubes and they are also taught how to do them.
    Let me know what else I can help you with.
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    What exactly is a med aide?
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    Here in Utah in assisted livings they have med aides The rule is the aide must have the class for med aide. They are not allowed to handle the Pt's pills at all. The Pt must have them pre set up by the pharmacy , family member or nurse and then they are dumped into the Pt's hand . Some assited livings have nurses who come in and count daily once a day with the aide to make sure they are getting there meds..

    Still kind of bothers me just a bit what if the Pt has a reaction will the aide know what to do? I guess call 911.
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    Quote from happthearts
    Here in Utah in assisted livings they have med aides The rule is the aide must have the class for med aide. They are not allowed to handle the Pt's pills at all. The Pt must have them pre set up by the pharmacy , family member or nurse and then they are dumped into the Pt's hand . Some assited livings have nurses who come in and count daily once a day with the aide to make sure they are getting there meds..

    Still kind of bothers me just a bit what if the Pt has a reaction will the aide know what to do? I guess call 911.

    I worked as an aide in a dd group home once and did have a client have a reaction to a new antibiotic on my shift- I called my supervisor. The important thing is good education and good communication. If a client is starting a new medication of any kind, alert the aide, even give them the pharmacy slip to read.
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    I am a medication aide in a nursing home. I attended a 24hr class to become certified to pass meds. I can give med po, sublingualy, patches, eye drops, ear drops, and check blood sugars. I cannot give insulin nor do peg or tube feeders. I can handle narcotics, and all the nurse really has to do is skin assesments,give insulin, transcribe orders,and do follow up orders. The hall I work on is the most chaotic and has the heaviest med pass, so they put me there to ease the load on the nurse working over me. for example, If I were to find someone breathing abnormally I would report it to my nurse check the pt 02 level then if needed give the pt oxygen. The medication aide does what the nurse would do when he or she is giving meds. Hope this helps
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    Med aide means different things in different states. Contacting the Board of Nursing will only be helpful if your state BON recognizes med aides. Otherwise, you need to look at what their training is comprised of. What are they "trained" with (there are several medication training guides out there, for eg: STARS is recognized by DFS for care centers in WY, and the Dept. of health recognizes another...neither are "required", each facility decides what works for them...) Then add in their "first aid training" and you get a decent idea about what they can/can't do.
    Be aware that it is a gray area!!! WY is currently working on creating a "CNA-MA" position- so in the mean time, we continue to utilize "med-aides" who are STARS or other "med trained" to get meds to the kids when the nurse isn't available. Soon, our present med aides won't be legal anymore, and we will have to meet the new requirements.... In the mean time we have to be the "best that we can be" using what we've got because there are no recognized standards!!!! Good luck finding your answers, hope this helps some!


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