Advice for the young. - page 3

Has anyone ever been fired from a nursing job for medication error and still managed to be successful and pursue the career?... Read More

  1. by   Meriwhen
    I'd guess that a majority of the medications errors are ones that a BON wouldn't bother to deal with. It doesn't mean that such errors should be taken lightly though...but as other posters said, BONs have a lot to deal with as it is. In the highly unlikely event that you were reported to the BON for this AND they feel this incident merits serious investigation, the BON will contact you. I wouldn't wait by the mailbox for that letter though, nor would I contact them asking if a complaint was made.

    Operate upon the premise of "no news is good news." Because I'd bet you weren't reported in the first place.

    Learn from the mistake, take a deep breath, and let it go. You should be fine.
  2. by   audreysmagic
    Quote from Guy in Babyland
    There is a myth that the BON deals with every little incident that nurses have. First, most board members are full time nurses/educators. Second, they only deal with issues that put patients and public at harm, such as criminal activity, diversion, egregious malpractice, etc. They do not have time for the insignificant issues like a PP was guilty of: giving a patient a bolus of NS instead of antibiotic.

    .
    ^ THIS. I review my BON disciplines every couple of months, mostly to be able to use that information in teaching new nurses and get the "BUT MY LICENSE!" paranoia out of them that a lot of nursing schools instilled. Here in IL it's gross negligence, criminal charges, diversion, and not paying your state taxes for an extended period of time that are the top 4. And even with BON-worthy events, they are so overwhelmed they take months. It's been nearly a year since a nurse I KNOW was reported to the BON was involved in that incident (kidnapping) and there's been nothing of it on the BON site as of yet. They took nearly 4 months just to get me my reciprocity when I moved here.

    So...you're good, OP. A minor (but still serious) med error like omission is not something BONs will be interested in, even if managers threaten that. I have an average of 25 med errors on my desk monthly, as my job requires me to process and record them. They are all similar to ones OP and PPs have described - important to learn from, but no patient harm. And we're a small hospital. Given our already overwhelmed BON, can you IMAGINE if I reported those, plus every other hospital in the area reported THEIRS? And multiply that by the whole state? It's just not feasible for BONs to go after such small (to them) things.

    And, yes, I have made a med error. Scared the crap out of me then, but no one was harmed, and you'd better bet I triple-check things now. Learning from it is the most important part.
  3. by   Klyver
    I feel most facilities don't fire anymore for med errors. They want you to learn from your mistakes and the system also learns from your mistake (bc usually its not just 1 factor in a med error, its an entire system failure). But you can deff still be successful... always check and double check and stay focused during med administration. I have no problem telling family members "give me 10 mins I am in the middle of administering medications and cannot talk with you"
  4. by   TruvyNurse
    Ive never been fired from a position personally but I did know a nurse who's negligence in the ER killed a patient. She's now a nurse on a Surgical floor. Scary yes but maybe you won't think your med error is so bad. Just be more careful next time. Im sure 90% of us on here have made a med error at one time or another. Hopefully harmless ones.
  5. by   ICUman
    Quote from Guy in Babyland
    First, most board members are full time nurses/educators.
    Source?
  6. by   Guy in Babyland
    Quote from ICUman
    Source?
    The President of the Indiana BON is the Dean of Nursing at a community college. Another is the owner of a consulting business. Most of the rest are professors at various nursing schools in Indiana. Indiana may be different from other states, but all of the board members have full-time jobs outside of the BON.
  7. by   mmc51264
    I was going to address this: have you been fired? We have the concept of "just culture" mistakes are rarely one person's fault. We have dual sign off on insulin. We have work lists, if you are new, you should have a resource nurse if you are just recently off of orientation. I had a wonderful preceptor and she taught me to fill out the error form on myself as a learning tool. EVERYONE makes a mistake at some time. I think you would have to do something really bad, malicious or so negligent to be fired.
  8. by   Kdk239
    Quote from mmc51264
    I was going to address this: have you been fired? We have the concept of "just culture" mistakes are rarely one person's fault. We have dual sign off on insulin. We have work lists, if you are new, you should have a resource nurse if you are just recently off of orientation. I had a wonderful preceptor and she taught me to fill out the error form on myself as a learning tool. EVERYONE makes a mistake at some time. I think you would have to do something really bad, malicious or so negligent to be fired.
    I was fired, but I had put my two week notice in and only had 2 days left. I was offered a dayshift position the day before and I declined it. The med error occurred several days before that.

    I recently found out another very established nurses who was excellent, made a medication error, self reported, and was fired as well. She had also put her two week notice in not long before it happened.


    I regret my error, but for now I am going to the best I can at being a better nurse.
  9. by   Medic/Nurse
    Even if you lose, don't lose the lesson.

    I have know several folks that were fired for med errors (even very serious ones) and all were eventually re-hired (some had license discipline) and, ultimately, all did fine.

    So you were fired for an isolated med error at the job you had 2 days left to work out your on your notice on - not that anyone rejoices in making mistakes and I'm not minimizing it, for I do not know the circumstances - somehow you are fretting that this will rise to BON action or become a mar on your "permanent record".

    Stop agonizing. It is what it is.

    I can only think of a couple of ways a med error remains problematic for you. Meaning if this IS reported to the BON and the employer documents - pattern of unsafe medication administration behavior that continued despite education/counseling/resources (safety to practice issue) &/or repetitive narcotic medication admin error issue - these 2 issues could likely be the ONLY things that get BON attention as not isolated incidents, if, in fact, the error is not a one-off. Look at your practice and the error and assess -

    - Do you have a documented pattern of med errors?
    - Did this med error involve a narcotic? If you've had other errors, were they involving narcotics?
    - Was the patient harmed in any way? Physically/emotionally

    If none of these apply, I'd think you are ok. If you are making med errors (even harmless ones, up till now) it's time for a hard reset.

    Only you know. If you know you are struggling a bit with organization or pharmacology or anything/something and are continuing to practice with issues and DO NOT MAKE CHANGES, GET EDUCATION, COUNSELING OR WHATEVER YOU NEED and make a med error going forward and a patient is harmed - while the prior incident may not rise to a "board action", it would certainly not serve it's purpose.

    If this is an isolated incident (no prior errors/never been fired for same), that existed in a vacuum, that did not involve harm to a patient and did not involve a narcotic - I'd just move on and put in my rear view mirror. You were fortunate you already had a job.


close