Quote from pharmacistKAREN
Hi..I am a pharmacist and I would like to know,as a nurse, what problems you encounter with pharmacy/pharmacists. I would especially like to know if you have a lot of missing meds if you are a hospital nurse.
My biggest pet peeve with Pharmacy is drug substitutions, which I understand is within their scope of practice, without at least calling the nurse and letting them know the change is being made and it can lead to a drug error.
Example: ..and I'll admit here I forget some of the details...but I had an order for Lasix that this baby had been on for days..the hospital was out of Lasix...we were not informed...another medication was substituted and I verified the ml against the order and drew it up...THANK GOD I am very consistent about the 5 rights...because the pharmacy had substituted another medication (someone help me here..I cannot remember the name but distinctly remember the drug book said it was 10x stronger than Lasix)..which did not match the order. The containers were similar...small, amber.
So I set my syringe down...verified again that the physician's order did not match what pharmacy had...I had to look up the drug that pharmacy had substituted because I had never administered the drug...and that was when I realized that I had drew up a whopping dose of the new medication, and only a fractional amount was to be given.
Now, when I originally called Pharmacy...you know what they told me? "Oh yeah, it's just another form of Lasix"...it was only after I wanted to verify the strength of the drug and that I was giving a very, very small dose, that they said, "You are right, it is much stronger, so you would administer the smaller amount...what we have in the computer is correct."
Communication would have gone a long way...but then again, it is why we have the 5 rights in place and the wrong dose was not administered...but I picked up the vial in all confidence it was Lasix..only to discover, it was not.
Oh...and one more pet peeve...Stat means Stat. If we say we need something now, a Pharm Tech had better be sprinting to the unit. I once had to wait an hour for antibiotics on an infant that had a perforated bowel...time is of the essence and that hour was an eternity for that baby...we do not use that term lightly...and if I was the pharmacist...hell would come down on the nurse that did!