I'm so devastated... - page 2
I almost made my first med error today. I am a level 2 student(out of 5 semesters) and this is my third clincial in med/surg. I wasn't doing anything, so my clinical instructor said one of nurses... Read More
Oct 10, '06no you didn't actually make the mistake this time but I think it's important for all of us to face the fact that it, most likely, WILL happen in the future. I wish the nursing profession as a whole would have more seminars such as "You made a Med Error and The Patient Died - How to Live With Yourself Now." Now of course the double antibiotic dose wouldn't kill the patient, but the premature infants in the news lately were killed by one dose of medicine, an adult dose of anticoagulants. So I think, as nurses, we need to face the fact that it is likely we will someday make an error and someone will have permanent sequelae as a result of our actions. I try to deal with it from the point of view as an occupational hazard. If your job entails giving meds, med errors will be a likely result. Does all the harm done from one error cancel out all the good done every other day of your career? Can we look at med errors as a system error rather than an individual error? After all, don't we have many, many mechanisms in place to prevent them? We need to stop blaming people for errors and start looking for system errors. In this example, you pinpointed where the system error was. The MAR didn't have the meds on them. AND you were pressured by an experienced nurse to disregard your gut. Lessons well learned by all of us. Don't rush. Don't let others sway you into compromising your standards. And never disregard your gut.
Oct 10, '06I have felt very uncomfortable when nurses have asked me to pass meds for them without the MAR and/or without taking them out myself or going over them VERY carefully. They are so busy and I really want to help, but I don't do this any more. (I have in the past and regret it.) Now I say, "My instructor won't let me give this."
Med errors are so easy to make. I made one my second time passing meds. I didn't get written up because my CI had carefully gone over the drugs with me and also didn't notice it was a wrong dosage. (I 'fessed up later and she just told me to keep mum.) Fortunately, it was only a supplement...