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Drug cards...what are they for?

Posted

My instructor hasn't required them, but i've heard them mentioned.

I have a drug book, which I mark the pages of when I'm looking up multiple meds, and highlight info. I dunno, just seems like a waste of time to copy what is in the book, onto a card that I'm then going to have to worry about organizing. Just curious what you guys use them for.

the drug cards are required for us. each week we go to our pre-conference and look at the patient's chart...etc. we write down all the prn meds. the next day we have to have a drug card filled out for each prn med. basically i put on there drug name, indications, side effects, normal adult dosages, and nursing implications. basically it is just a way to slowly learn a lot of commonly used drugs and we are responsible to know what our patient is taking and why.

It's good to have those cards on hand when you have to give meds in front of your instructor. They will ask you what the drugs are for, the side effects, and if there is any special precautions that you must be aware of. For example, I had to give my patient Digoxin for CHF. Before administering the drug, you have to take the patient's pulse. It has to be >60 bpm.

akcarmean, LPN

Specializes in Home Health Care,LTC.

Our teacher required us to make drug cards for every Rx the patient was on. Daily and PRN Rx. It was to help us retain the medication and the uses, side effects, etc. We had them to look at before we gave medication so if the instructor asked us why we were giving the med. we knew, or would ask side effects, etc. They could ask anything lab. values if it applied to the Rx. There are a lot easier to carry in your pocket than your big Rx book. We had to have that with us also incase meds. changed during the night when we weren't there.Angelia

Altra, BSN, RN

Specializes in Emergency & Trauma/Adult ICU.

My instructor hasn't required them, but i've heard them mentioned.

I have a drug book, which I mark the pages of when I'm looking up multiple meds, and highlight info. I dunno, just seems like a waste of time to copy what is in the book, onto a card that I'm then going to have to worry about organizing. Just curious what you guys use them for.

Hi Checkers,

The drug cards, which are a part of our standard weekly paperwork assignments for most clinicals, are a way of ensuring that you're learning about the action, side effects, and other considerations of the meds you're giving to pts.

Have you given meds in clinicals yet? Especially when you get pts. that are getting more than a dozen meds each, it's not practical or safe to be looking up each one right before giving it -- there could be a number of assessments and interactions that you need to know throughout the day, not just at the moment you're giving the med.

It's frustrating, I know ... no one will ever memorize everything there is to know about all the thousands & thousands of drugs on the market. But the drug cards are one effective way to start to cram all that stuff into your head. :)

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