my first mistake

  1. it's my first job as a new grad and i'm still on orientation. i left gave a cup full of meds to a patient who assured me he would take them. i did not watch him take the meds. and turns out he didn't take them . i was in and out of their all day and did not see the meds but the next day his family member found them and now i am in trouble for signing off on meds that were not taken.

    i feel like a total idiot. i will never ever trust a patient to take their meds again. but the thing is, my preceptor leaves meds with patients and family members all the time! of course i didn't tell the nurse manager who was "counseling" me on the error about that.

    this is certainly a mistake that i will never forget though. normally i would never have left a med with a patient but i think that i have picked up some bad shortcuts from my preceptor who tells me that i am too slow sometimes. ack!
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   AnnieOaklyRN
    NEVER assume when it comes to healthcare, as it will only get you in trouble.

    Sorry this occured, but learn from it.

    Swtooth
  4. by   Mommy TeleRN
    That stinks. I am fortunate that I was able to intern and watched all the nurses in action. I purposefully picked the one I did because I felt she didn't bend so many "rules" and would teach me the right way to do things. It is important to try and follow your gut... imagine your nursing instructor was there..then what would you do? lol
    Try not to let it shake you up too much... learn and move forward!
  5. by   pagandeva2000
    There are so many times that we may feel forced to take short cuts, so, I understand how this can happen. We learn from our mistakes and I am sure that you will either stand there to make sure the patient takes the meds or you will walk away and come back later; documenting what the response of the client was. I am sorry this happened to you because I am sure you didn't mean it.
  6. by   RNDreamer
    Don't feel like that, you have to learn from your mistakes...I work at an assisted living facilty...The patient I care for has a roomate...my patient "Tom" is considered the "ill mannered" resident, and his roomate "Rick" is considered the "well behaved" resident....now there are med techs at the facilty (i think that what they are called, as they arent nurses) ...Because I've seen the meds my patient takes (color, shape, and size, not the names) I'm familiar with them...One the, my coworker (rick's aid) come to me with some pills and sais she found them in the bathroom and were they Tom's...I said I was sure they weren't, but we could not figure out how they got there...I was afraid that maybe a worker was stealing pills and accidently left them there...The next morning she found some more pills...the med techs decided that it was time to watch tom closely, and then a few days later, my co worker found some more pills...even the med techs were stumped...long story short, the pills were Rick's, no one, not even me, considered that he would hide his pills...I learned then that when I become a nurse I would need to be careful when giiving meds...take care!

    Quote from lilnat03
    it's my first job as a new grad and i'm still on orientation. i left gave a cup full of meds to a patient who assured me he would take them. i did not watch him take the meds. and turns out he didn't take them . i was in and out of their all day and did not see the meds but the next day his family member found them and now i am in trouble for signing off on meds that were not taken.

    i feel like a total idiot. i will never ever trust a patient to take their meds again. but the thing is, my preceptor leaves meds with patients and family members all the time! of course i didn't tell the nurse manager who was "counseling" me on the error about that.

    this is certainly a mistake that i will never forget though. normally i would never have left a med with a patient but i think that i have picked up some bad shortcuts from my preceptor who tells me that i am too slow sometimes. ack!
  7. by   sofaraway04
    this hasn't happened to me yet. I will sometimes leave meds with a patient, our drug rounds are at the same times as meals so some patients will have their meds after they have finished eating. I wouldn't do this if this is a patient I haven't met before, but If I know the pateint and know that they will not forget to take them i'll leave them and check back in half an hour to check they are taken.
  8. by   onduty23
    i never thought that as a mistake . if i give meds i sign off i did my part. i never the nurse had to watch patient take med. news to me
  9. by   kellyskitties
    Don't beat yourself up. In the real world there are sometimes shortcuts. I myself have left meds with an oriented pt and come back later to find them on the bed table. I ask pt why? One pt didn't tell me she refused her reglan PO until I entered room with the next dose. I just charted it. I don't feel it's my responsibility to check oriented people for "cheeking pills" or hiding them. Had an oriented little old man who would "palm" them to avoid taking so much pain medication. I told him he should just refuse the dose and we would get dose adjusted. He thought he "HAD" to take them and he didn't want to.

    I don't babysit every pt to be sure pills go down. I do usually make sure pills get from cup to mouth and that they have water to drink - then I move on to the next 9 pts. Usually I make a 2200 round anyway after passing 2100 meds and I check and pitch the empty med cups as I tidy on the run.

    It's not a huge deal unless pt missed a med for something serious or is "pocketing" narcs.

    Shortcuts aren't the way you are taught in school. Just be sure you don't take short cuts you are uncomfortable with. You are ultimately responsible.
    Last edit by kellyskitties on May 24, '07

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