I'm a new *new* nurse. fresh out of school. just passed my boards in march. this is also my first job. ever.
i work the 7a-3p shift in a nursing home. we have a front and back hall. i'm in the back hall. it's not as busy as the front. i've done clinicals in a nursing home before but i was only looking after two residents. now i have 25-30 residents.
according to state, i have an hour before 9 and an hour after to pass meds. but in all honesty, i give out my first meds of the morning at 7:30 and i don't finish til about 130. i have about 25-30 residents with meds ranging from 1 to 15 pills. im aware of the factors that affect med pass. i.e., emergencies such as falls or incidents, a resident take more than 5min to take meds, family calls, doctor wants updates, new orders to be added or d/c'd. but for the month i've worked there, i still can't get all my meds out before 1200. i've only taken a lunch break 4 times in the 3 weeks i've been on my own medcart. im stressing out cuz im worried about not giving meds on time and we all kno stress on an empty stomach is a no-no.
i've learned some tips from nurses who've worked in my hall on how to be faster in med pass. start with the people nearest the nurses' station. then start with in the back and work your way forward. one of them also told me, which is probably not good.. she told me that if they have one little pill in the afternoon, say like a vitamin, it wouldn't hurt to give it with morning meds. so it kinda cuts down my 12pm meds. but heart meds and things like plavix and insulin need to stay at their designated times right?
i have 6 accucheck ppl and two who need insulin at specific times. maybe i should remember what time breakfast and lunch is served so i can know where to put my insulins.
sorry this is long.. and idk how you can help me if you're not where i work, but if you have any tips that'd be great.
i just wish they'd let me stay on the floor after shift change so i can learn my resident's meds. during med pass, that's the only thing on my mind: pass meds, pass meds, pass meds. i have learned from repition but not by memory yet. i know it takes time but i wanna get my routine down now. there are not enough hours in a day lol
Never memorize meds but double check to see if orders were changed. And yes know your patients habits especially in LTC, sometimes reasoning or logical discussion (i.e. you need this for your infection) will not help. If you know so and so doesn't take his meds unless he's in a certain chair, with a certain snack and the sun at a certain location in the sky do not bother trying to get him to take it because you will delay everyone else's meds. Make a note and go back to him. As time goes on you will get to know your residents, love most of them like family and you will be much more efficient. Sometimes following the text book: crushing each pill in a separate cup and mixing it with a separate spoonful of applesauce is too idealistic.. also it can get applesauce spit in your face (personal exp lol). Use your nursing judgement. There is no cutting corners but increasing efficiency is always possible. Every minute you shave off adds up and before you know it you saved an hour! I was also able to pass meds to 30-40 res within the designated times. It's definitely possible!
Last edit by newrnltc on Jun 15, '13
: Reason: spelling