Technology in preventing medication errors

  1. 1
    I am not a nurse and know nothing about new technology in preventing medication errors.
    I am a pre-nursing student working through my pre-req's right now.
    I have an upcoming paper on any technology topic I'd like to choose.
    I would love to write about the technology being implemented, or in the works, for preventing medication errors in hospitals.

    So, I am not asking anyone to do my homework for me I would just love it if someone could let me know what types of things are being used - what kind of technology - so that I can dig deeper into the topic, and hopefully find something I'd like to write about.
    I only know of dosages being calculated by nurses, but it seems I read something here a year or two ago about some type of scanning device for meds???

    Any help would be appreciated!

    Thanks!
    lindarn likes this.

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  2. 11 Comments...

  3. 0
    Each med has a bar code that can be scanned by a hand held scanner. We also use a computer based med ordering and charting system. Good luck.
  4. 0
    Google barcode medication administration systems. we use it for all meds and it works great. it cannot replace the human brain, however, like asking, why does this patient need this particular med?
  5. 0
    BCMA----a barcode medication adminstration. It is a scanned technique. Keeps you looking at the order make sure u have the right medication. Cons...some liquid meds come in full dose such as 30cc and the order reads 15cc , so you would have to physically typed it in. Over all Pretty neat.
  6. 0
    We have bardcoded pt. identification bands that you must can prior to scanning meds (to ensure it is ordered).

    Also, when a high risk med is ordered (like Hep drip/Insulin/Cardizem) Pharamacy must approve it on our electronic mar before giving.
  7. 1
    "Medication profiling" is another mechanism used to help prevent errors. The majority of our meds are kept in and dispensed by big machines called Pyxis, Omnicell, Suremed, etc. The machines have a touch-screen monitor. You pick your patient and only those medications that have been ordered for that patient and approved by the pharmacist will show up on the screen. You pick the med you want to get out and a drawer with that med pops out. If a patient is not ordered for Prilosec, you won't be able to get Prilosec out of the machine. This helps reduce the risk of accidentally grabbing the wrong med or wrong dose. There are some emergency medications like morphine and epinephrine that nurses can override and get out if necessary.
    Last edit by April, RN on Oct 6, '10
    TDCHIM likes this.
  8. 0
    oh thank you all SO much! This really helps me in knowing what to look up. I looked up medication errors, but was not finding anything like the barcode medication administration system.

    Thank you all very much!
  9. 1
    The VA hospitals use BCMA, also the Pyxis (med dispenser) can communicate the the BCMA system which can also communicate with Eris (computer charting). So when everything talks to each other, it helps to prevent errors and you dont have to look in 3 places to find something. Also all informtaion is available at fingertips in every patient room.
    TDCHIM likes this.
  10. 0
    we have all these, but it did not prevent a student from creating an error recently. She took the MAR (medication order) to the medication dispensing machine (Pyxis). The order and the name in the Pyxis computer matched. Then she looked at the patient's ID band and asked him to state his name. It matched the ID band but DID NOT match the medication order. All she really did was verify he had on the right ID band. She gave him someone else's meds. No lasting effect, but could have been.
  11. 0
    Quote from classicdame
    we have all these, but it did not prevent a student from creating an error recently. She took the MAR (medication order) to the medication dispensing machine (Pyxis). The order and the name in the Pyxis computer matched. Then she looked at the patient's ID band and asked him to state his name. It matched the ID band but DID NOT match the medication order. All she really did was verify he had on the right ID band. She gave him someone else's meds. No lasting effect, but could have been.
    Is your MAR on paper? Having an electronic MAR (EMAR) might have prevented that. With the system we use, you scan the meds in the patient's room and then scan the wrist band. If you scan the meds and then scan the wrong pt's ID band, a big message pops up on the screen to alert you of the error. It's not completely fool proof, but if you use it correctly it really is a lot harder to make a med error.


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