Medication error questions for nurses.

  1. I am a student nurse and would be very greatful if a staff nurse and a a charge nurse would answer some questions about med. errors.

    Staff Nurse Questions:

    Age__ Length of time in nursing___

    1. What did you learn about medication errors in your nursing program (school)?

    2. What are you beliefs about the cause and frequency of medication errors?

    3. How often do you believe that nurses do not report a medication error and the reason why?

    4. Can you tell me about a medication error that occured on your nursing unit?

    5. What is the procedure when a medication error occurs?

    6. What do would be the most helpfull information to a new graduate to prevent or lower the incidence of medication errors?

    7. How are medication errors used to continuously improve the care of your clients?


    Carge Nurse Questions:

    Age___ Lenght of time in nursing___ Length of time as a charge nurse____

    1. What is the frequency of medication errors in your area of responsibility?

    2. What are the nursing responsibiities when an error occurs?

    3. Have you had to develop educational plans or give letters of counsiling because of medication errors?

    4. What hospital committee makes decisions concerning medication errors?

    5. What advice do you have for a new graduate nurse?

    6. How are medication errors tracked by nursing to find causes and client care?

    Many thanks to those who respond!!!
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  2. 3 Comments

  3. by   thisnurse
    ill help ya cos when i had to do this interview thing someone helped me.

    44 years old........nurse for 5 years

    1.Mainly we learned how to avoid them by using the 5 rights.

    2.I think medication errors happen more often than most people think. The cause, I think, is from hurrying and trying to cut corners to save time.

    3.My guess is that unless there is impending harm to the patient, nurses dont report them at all.
    I'll bet there are some that don't report them even if there is a chance of harm.

    4.I can tell you about the one I made when I was a student. I read my own writing wrong. I thought my note said 20 units when it actually said 2U. I gave my patient a total of 24 units of insulin.
    I immediately realized what I had done and told my instructor.I began giving her juice with sugar. The doctor was called and then the patient was told what I had done and asked if she still wanted me to care for her. She said yes. An incident report was filed. No harm came to the patient.

    5. Although I've never done it, the procedure is to notify the charge nurse, who will decide whether or not to notify the nursing supervisor.
    Take care of the patients immediate needs. Phone the doctor to see how they want to proceed. When the whole process is finished you have to file an incident report. Risk management steps in and takes over after that. Depending on the circumstances, the nurse may or may not recieve remediation.

    6.The best advice that anyone can give you is the
    same thing they teach you in school, the 5 rights of medication. If you follow these faithfully you wont make a mistake.

    7. I can't say I really understand this question, but as I am reading it I will say that mistakes can be used to learn from, for both you and your
    coworkers, just as in life, generally speaking.
    This is a topic that's not really addressed much on our unit. If med errors were an issue they would certainly have been a topic of a staff meeting.

    Hope this helps
  4. by   deespoohbear
    33 years old 7 years as an RN

    5 rights and triple check

    Short staffing, poor handwriting, inappropiate use of abbreviations, names with similar sounding names

    I think it happens often. Most of them fear some kind of disciplinary action.

    One time we had a nurse run heparin at twice the rate it should have been. The error was caught by the oncoming nurse. The doctor was immediately notified, and the patient treated. The doctor was a real jerk in the situation. The nurse was a new nurse and didn't understand the heparin protocol.

    We notifiy the doctor and fill out a PERTS. Of course, we take care of the patient's needs such as monitoring, and whatever treatment may be appopriate.

    Use your 5 rights and triple check. If a dosage seems inappropiate, don't hesistate to ask a fellow nurse, a doctor, or a pharmacist about the medication and the dosage. If you are not sure what a med is given for, check it out.

    Special labeling is used on sound alike names. Both the generic and brand name is listed. Units is spelled out. PERTS are used to track down the reason for the med error.

    I hope this is helpful.
  5. by   thisnurse
    boy if i learned nothing else, i sure learned to spell out UNITS...lol

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Medication error questions for nurses.