unlicensed staff passing medication

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    I know of nursing aides hired in the state who pass medications after only a few weeks of training. With all that nurses have to learn this really is not right. How can nys get away with this as a safe practice? anyone know?
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    I don't know about your state, but in Ky and Indiana a nurse's aide can take some training and administer medications in a nursing home or assisted living setting, but not in the hospital. Fully legal and done on a daily basis. They are called QMA (qualified medication aide) in Indiana and CMT (certified medication tech) in Kentucky. Nothing shady about it. Keeps the nursing home from having to have so many nurses and spend their almighty dollars, is my guess as to why it is so.
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    Hi,thankyou for responding. What happened to the state laws concerning nurses only providing medications to patients? like oops gotta change that rule and this rule and that rule....? What in the world will nurses be doing in 2008--watching 20-hour inserviced staff making skilled decisions. What type of medications do they pass in kentucky? In new york in the OMRDD, they pass anti-seizure meds, narcotics, they even order them. This is not right. It is an excuse not to hire nurses. What do you think?:imbar
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    Totally an excuse not to hire nurses...they cost too much to many facilities, or in the case of assisted living, nursing homes, etc. you can't find too many nurses around here willing to do it (after you go geri's around here, you can never go back...I have been denied jobs for over 2 years because they call me "oh..a rest home nurse"..chaps my hide bad!!!!!!!!)!

    I work in assisted living, and CNA's or unlicensed caregivers administer medications via assignment/delegation by an RN. Scared the heck out of me at first...but luckily I work with a CNA staff I have known for 2 years and they know what they are doing or they ask me! Actually they catch more pharmacy errors and even..gasp..nursing errors than any of us LN's...so they have my respect. Plus most of my CNA's have been in the business, even that facility, for over 5 years! AND they really do ask if they are unsure...even if they think it is a stupid question..they ask!!!!! (bless their hearts!!! ).

    The thing that scares me is swing shift! They are basically all new, most never touched more than a tylenol (and of course never touched "acetaminophen"..UHG!) for themselves! They go through a 1 day training course by one RN, then 1 week of observed med pass..then off they go. I saw three faces today I didn't know..none of them licensed! Oh boy...that doesn't sit right with me being one of three RN's in that whole place! I can't help what other shift caregivers do, but held responsible anyway!

    BUT, they are not allowed to do CBG's, injections, or complex dressings...but they can admin O2 (strict rules though..I teach that class personally..and I make it fun to learn and since I am very EMS at heart...I teach via funny true stories..they don't tend to forget those!!! Ohhh those gals can spin volumes and carry on debates about hypoxic drive that would have some nurses VERY suprised!).

    I am not sold on the idea though...a med aide would be much better! But since I work in assisted living and not a nursing home, the rules I guess differ...where you can find the rules...sheesh, good luck...been trying for 2 years to find them (even e-mailed and wrote my SBN several times..no response..it is like they don't want to go there!).

    Oh yeah...Oregon btw...
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    Florida has a similar law. A CNA can take a FOUR HOUR course and be certified topass medsin an ALF. I used to teach it, but do not any more because we know it takes years to learn how to be a safe nurse, what to observe for side effects ect. these CNA's are only taught the basic techniques of the 5 rights and a few tips on passing the pills. The state has a way to get around actual administration of the meds. These medication aides are taught to assist the resident, and the resident is actually self administering because they raise the pill cup to their mouth as opposed tothe CNA placing the pills in their mouth.. which I know does happen anyways. This is not considering administering the med under the way the law is written.. still unsafe in my opinion. But Florida ALF's use them all the time. and yes they sign out and give narcotics as well. No injectables, or suppositories, vag creams, etc.
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    NC has a similar law, and unlicensed people are passing meds in group homes, family care homes, and community based mental health treatment programs (that I know of -- I'm only familiar with the Wonderful World of Psych :chuckle )

    It's all about $$$$$$, and having a powerful lobby.
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    I used to work in the ALF in Florida (Tampa) I am horrified at the amount of times a med tech (CNA who has taken 4 hour med pass course) would come to me and ask what this or that pill was for. Also no b/p taken before administering therapuetic cardiac & anti-hypertensives, no pulse taken..EVER! - I would also see meds that need to be given ac vs pc given when the med tech "gets to it".
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    Here in NC, I work in an ALF and all I had to do was go take a medication administration test to be certified to pass meds. We have a medication aide course that is one week long and you take a test. If you are employed by a facility, though, you don't have to take the class.
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    Quote from KaroSnowQueen
    I don't know about your state, but in Ky and Indiana a nurse's aide can take some training and administer medications in a nursing home or assisted living setting, but not in the hospital. Fully legal and done on a daily basis. They are called QMA (qualified medication aide) in Indiana and CMT (certified medication tech) in Kentucky. Nothing shady about it. Keeps the nursing home from having to have so many nurses and spend their almighty dollars, is my guess as to why it is so.
    And people wonder why we have a glut of nurses. As I stated in another thread,why would they spend $20.00/hr for a nurse when they could pay a can $8.00 to do it? Time to take back our profession.
  12. 0
    Quote from elkpark
    NC has a similar law, and unlicensed people are passing meds in group homes, family care homes, and community based mental health treatment programs (that I know of -- I'm only familiar with the Wonderful World of Psych :chuckle )

    It's all about $$$$$$, and having a powerful lobby.
    In Nc I was working in a Pediatric psych group home as the only nurse there,everyone i was in charge of were called resident mentors with no training to pass meds . A med error by one of them on a shift I didn't work,and on top of that a day I wasn't there cost me my job.
    Last edit by smartnurse1982 on Jun 19, '10


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