Is that my med error?

  1. Hello everyone!

    I'm a new LVN and just started to work on the floor by myself in a SNF. It was my second day yesterday and It was not very easy. I have a question to those of you who have been a nurse for years with tremendous experiences...
    To make the story short, I received a new order from the doctor. Here's the order: Give 3 more doses of IV cefepimine then start cipro po bid x 8 days after the last dose...So i noted the order, put it in the MAR writing + 3 more doses on the IV flow sheet, and then i put cipro bid x 8 days to be started on the date when the last dose of IV will be here's the thing..the AM nurse didn't see the additional 3 more doses that was ordered so she didn't give the 2nd dose IV, but instead gave the cipro po... we went to the assistant DON, called the MD & so on....they asked us to make a med error report about that. the DON asked me to sign the med error report too, so I signed. but then i realized last night that i didn't commit any med error since i gave the 1st of the 3 doses, and she was the one who didn't give the 2nd dose and instead gave the cipro po...I want your insights please....i am not comfortable & i think of talking to our DON to clarify that. Thank you in advance.
  2. Visit payang0722 profile page

    About payang0722

    Joined: May '11; Posts: 61; Likes: 62
    LVN in a LTC; from US
    Specialty: Geriatric


  3. by   jnrsmommy
    You noted the order, you transcribed it correctly on the MARs, you started the first of the additional 3 IV doses, and the other nurse missed the next dose. No, it is not your error.
  4. by   Flo.
    No, that is not your error.
  5. by   Up2nogood RN
    If you were involved in finding the error you would need to sign the report as either the witness to the event or as the one filling out the report.
    How could you be responsible though? Relax and think it through. You transcribed everything correctly. Maybe it would be helpful to think of ways to alert other nurses when there's a new or tricky order. Do you have a shift to shift report where info like this can be passed on to the next shift? Or could you have put a sticky note on that med page with an alert to the nurse passing meds? Med error reports should not be used for punishment but to find out what happened and how to prevent it from happening again.
  6. by   payang0722
    Thank you for the reply
  7. by   systoly
    First I'd like to say I believe you did great. I also believe this type of situation is not something a brand new LPN should handle by herself.
    Second, I hope the ADON and, or DON didn't stop with the med error form.
    It really doesn't matter to me who made the mistake. What matters is why did it happen. Did shift report break down? Is there a better way to flag MARs?
    My suggestion is don't worry about having signed the error report, instead find ways to avoid repeats and present your suggestions to the DON. Your DON's response will give you great insight on who you're working for as well.
  8. by   novairene
    The new IV order should have been written as a SEPARATE order (not just +3) with clear start and stop dates. Maybe the order could read: Continue IV...times 3 doses.
    The PO ATB should have been written with a CLEAR start date (and shift/time if need be). If it was a paper MAR it should even have the date marked and previous dates crossed through.
    Anyway, you are not the one that GAVE the med incorrectly, so, yes it is technically not your error. However, writing the new order VERY clearly could prevent this.
    I do not know the line you signed, but it is not your error.
    Also, when in doubt about a new order, ask another nurse, even at change of shift.
    Don't worry, you will learn these things with time.
  9. by   Whispera
    In my opinion it wasn't your error. It was the other nurse's error and a system error. It's crucial to flag things that are to start after something else finishes. A note right on the MAR can work, in red or highlighted somehow. Otherwise, depending on how things are written, someone might not understand the whole story. I still don't see this as your fault. You can tweak your method some, but the other nurse should have read the whole MAR before she gave anything.

    Med error reports aren't intended to punish those who make errors. They're intended to draw attention to things that can be fixed in the future.
  10. by   leslie :-D
    i always made it a point to report new orders, at change of shift.
    in one place, we had a 'report book' in addition to verbal report.
    this was convenient for those who came in late, leaving early, or busy otherwise...
    really, like a backup book.

    you did a commendable job as a newbie.
    as stated, you will discover innovative ways to ensure communication is enhanced to extent possible.

    good luck, honey.

  11. by   payang0722
    THANK YOU, THANK YOU to all the replies.. I didn't sleep the whole night & reading all your comments made me feel better. From this, I will make sure to really write the orders very clearly & flag it if necessary to prevent the same mistake next time. I was crying on my way home at 2 am about that, but I felt better now. Thanks a thousand again!
  12. by   Esme12
    Quote from payang0722
    THANK YOU, THANK YOU to all the replies.. I didn't sleep the whole night & reading all your comments made me feel better. From this, I will make sure to really write the orders very clearly & flag it if necessary to prevent the same mistake next time. I was crying on my way home at 2 am about that, but I felt better now. Thanks a thousand again!
    I agree with everyone.....If you were apart of the discovery that a med wasn't given then of course sign the occurence report. It is not an admission of guilt. But it was not your error. Sit down with your manager and peers in the furture at your next unit meeting to see if there can be an improvment in documentation or the flagging of new med orders........Good job!
  13. by   debi49
    Congratulations!! You did great!! Second day as a new LVN and you were able to sort thru a complicated issue. You are a great nurse!!

    Re: Med error reports. They are generally used for internal purposes, to track system failures, patterns of errors, and most importantly, for education. I have written MYSELF up for errors, and use errors as they come up to educate my staff (and myself).

    Agree with all above...not your error, but you can still learn from others mistakes Again, congrats and good luck!
  14. by   canesdukegirl
    OP, I am just wondering WHAT form your nurse manager had you sign. Was it an incident report (and if so, did you read through it thoroughly), or was it something different?

    You WERE NOT at fault here. You transcribed and carried out the orders. You gave the IV orders as written. I wonder why the oncoming nurse missed the order...did she not read through everything?

    Honey, don't lose sleep over this. You did nothing wrong. Make a note of this in your memory bank, and perhaps when you get enough experience, you can use this incident as an example of how you would like to change some of the policies at your place of employment. The orders seemed cut and dried to me, but if another nurse was unsure of the order, there must be some communication flaw in existence.

    Now you rest your head easy tonight, dear one! I am glad that you are the type of nurse who is vigilant about these things. Kudos to you for catching it!