Medication errors


  1. I'm Director of Nursing in a Long Term Care Facility, I would like to know what some other facilities do for positive reinforcement to their staff.
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  2. 24 Comments

  3. by   Sheilar
    I was a Director of Nursing of a 282 bed facility prior to returning to school and found that giving positive reinforcement can be as simple as a compliment (no cost to the facility) to having a pot luck monthly served by Administration, a day off with pay, hand out lottery tickets, etc.

    I conducted "Positive Rounds" weekly. The staff especially the CNA's liked "Positive Rounds". Positive Rounds consisted of completing rounds with the staff assigned to that floor, pointing out and documenting all positives, signing the copy and posting it in the break room for other staff members to view.
  4. by   shull
    I always complimented the staff for there hard work, I sent them a thank you card if they were outstanding, I recognized them at staff meetings. I offered my help when they needed it. The facility would do the normal things like a summer picnic for the staff, Christmas party, or cash bonus.
  5. by   jllister
    Our DON made lists of everyone's errors / holes and handed them out at a staff meeting. I was disappointed to get a list, although mine was blank. When asked, the DON said she didn't want to "single anyone out" or make anyone else "feel bad" for their errors. My suggestion: Single me out! Reward those who are alert to their medications and documentation! We don't always need goodies - verbal praise is worth a lot. I also liked the previous DON's suggestion of Positive Rounds.
  6. by   caliotter3
    We had a nurse who went around actually creating med errors for her coworkers and reporting these to the supervisors and DON. Her behavior ceased when the DON fired her after a resident died hours after one of her actions. She did it to a resident who wasn't even assigned to her.

    Until the untimely death and ensuing consequences, nurses mostly expressed mild to moderate irritation at the error sheets. They didn't really take these seriously. The behavior of the nurse who went around creating med errors was always a topic of conversation, but it never went very far due to her "favored" status. When she was fired, just another topic for conversation. Respect for mgmt was not high there.

    I agree with the posters who recommend positive reinforcement. If a manager is reluctant to make public comments about specific people, then address their work behavior (both positive and negative) privately, in writing. Then, nobody should be surprised at performance review time and those who care about their work can take necessary steps to improve their performance. Just be fair and treat everybody the same way.
  7. by   nightmare
    Because I always work two nights together I always check for my two signatures the week before and ,on the second night , the sig.the night before.It's very easy to get distracted especially when your short-staffed and forget to sign after administering meds.Our drugs given sheet is laid out for about 10 days so it is easy enough to check back and sign or put in asleep or declined etc.
    If we come across nonsigned meds we usually remind each other at handover.
    Last edit by nightmare on Jun 25, '07 : Reason: added info.
  8. by   CapeCodMermaid
    We are all human beans (!) and therefore we all make mistakes. To discuss in public someone's mistakes is shameful. Take the nurse aside and tell her she has made a mistake or an omission.
    Praise, on the other hand, should be done ofen and in as public a place a possible.
    At one place I worked they had employee of the month, but the person was called to the office to be informed they had won. I said "Let's make it a bigger deal" and wrote a song (OKAY...it's NOT going to win a Grammy) to sing to the winner on the unit where they were working in front of their co-workers and patients. All the department heads gathered, we had a balloon and off we went clapping and carrying on so people would stop what they were doing and acknowledge the 'winner'. The staff and the patients loved it.
    At another place we had a real problem with staff wearing name tags. I posted a notice saying the 'Name Tag Sheriff' would be in town on Wednesday and anyone 'caught' wearing a name tag would get a ticket. At the end of the day all the names were put in a hat and the person whose name was drawn got a 'lovely gift'. It was fun, inexpensive and got the message across in a positive way.
  9. by   nightmare
    Wow CCM want to come and be our matron/manager!We never get any sort of praise from our management only what we haven't done! It is very disheartening to work your socks off and not even get a Christmas card at the end of it.
  10. by   stamper52
    How do you deal with medication errors? I want to be consistent and fair. Everyone makes mistakes but how many are "acceptable"? Some facilities show favoritism to certain staff members who commit errors and are harsh on others. There should be a consistent manner of dealing with this.
  11. by   rnwings
    Quote from Buffy
    I'm Director of Nursing in a Long Term Care Facility, I would like to know what some other facilities do for positive reinforcement to their staff.
    The facility where I work does nothing. It would be nice just to get a pat on the back, or a thank you for a job well done. The only time I see the D.O.N. on my wing is when there's something wrong or she's there to scold someone.
  12. by   rnwings
    Quote from stamper52
    How do you deal with medication errors? I want to be consistent and fair. Everyone makes mistakes but how many are "acceptable"? Some facilities show favoritism to certain staff members who commit errors and are harsh on others. There should be a consistent manner of dealing with this.

    We get written up for med errors. Any 3 write ups pertaining to the same offence, then gets a counciling slip. 1st counciling slip is a written warning, 2nd one is 3 days off (no pay) 3rd one is 5 days off (no pay) 4th, your out the door. But yes, I know what your talking about. Whats good for one should be good for the other. We all should play fair. I think no matter where you go you'll find "Favortism".
  13. by   rnwings
    I am a Charge Nurse where I work. I am currently having problems with my CNAs. Lately we have a new group of young girls, and I am having trouble gaining respect. Any ideas out there? I don't want to be known as "------"
  14. by   nightmare
    Quote from rnwings
    I am a Charge Nurse where I work. I am currently having problems with my CNAs. Lately we have a new group of young girls, and I am having trouble gaining respect. Any ideas out there? I don't want to be known as "------"
    One way to gain their respect is to work with them,one to one,when they see that you can do what they do and know the "job" then ,hopefully ,you will get some respect from them.I realise this can be difficult for you what with the time constraints of your other duties but it works for me.

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Medication errors