CNA giving medications.... - page 2

Ok. So I went on my clinicals last week. I was at the table feeding a woman who needed assistance with her meal, when the LPN came and put medication in her drink. I didn't know what to do because if... Read More

  1. by   Sally Lou
    Quote from Asystole RN
    Arizona allows CNAs to be trained as "Medication Aides" but this obviously does not apply to students.

    Now to answer your question.

    There is a difference between administering a medication and assisting a patient in administering a medication to themselves. Sometimes the line gets blurred but it is an important legal distinction.

    I would say the LPN was out of line for not controlling the administration of her medications but you were fine. You were not putting pills into her mouth, you were not putting meds into her cup, you were not initiating, intending, or attempting to administer medications. Simply you were assisting the patient with eating.

    Many patients will be on specific diets for specific reasons, for example; increased potassium diet. Now the intent of this order is to deliver an increased level of potassium, this by definition, as defined by the FDA, makes her food a "Drug." Of course you can still feed the poor woman. In addition to this there are some medications I may not be able to administer for various reasons but this does not stop me from assisting the patient to administer it to themselves. (Putting the medication into their hands, filling the syringe etc.)

    This is however a very fine line with a ton of legalese that you do not want to get in the middle of, report this to your instructor.

    The med's were in this patients food. That IS considered passing med's. And what would have happened if the LPN had screwed up and given this patient the wrong med's or something she was allergic to? It's not just about passing med's. It's knowing what the med IS for and if the person has any allergies to med's (being a cna that is not allowed to pass med's you would not know this). When i could pass med's i would never leave my residents with someone who wasn't med trained to finish giving them. Signing the MAR means you did the 5 "rights" before giving/after giving them and actually watched the person take them.
  2. by   CAT-CNA
    I agree with everyone else, you are not to give the lady the cup, the LPN was suppose to physically give it to her. Where I live CNAs can be trained to pass meds, but they have to have 1000 hours of CNA experience and go through class, clinicals, and a state test. I have seen LPNs do this many times, CYA and have the nurse do it. Always remember it is YOUR license on the line, not theirs (ok it could be the LPNs license too, but the one you should be most concerned with is yours).
  3. by   NurseCubanitaRN2b
    I agree with everyone else except for one thing. It's smart to use the chain of command, and that means going to your clinical instructor first and letting her/him handle it from there. In that situation you should never go to the unit manager/charge nurse unless your clinical instructor doesn't handle it the way she/he is supposed to. Your clinical instructor should be the one reporting to the charge nurse/unit manager because that's not your responsiblity. Our instructors told this to us because it takes the heat off of us students and places it on them instead.

    What I would have done was asked for a new juice or whatever it was that you had for the patient, and given the clinical instructor the juice that was tampered with.