BCMA , the VA system & agency nursing

  1. First of all, does anyone else use the BCMA for administering their medications besides alot of us in the VA system? Second, if you do, do you have agency nurses work at your facility? The nurses that I work with were having a discussion last night regarding the use of agency nursing in our VA facility. You would think that with all the money the government has and their concern about giving the veterans the best healthcare available, why on earth can't they spend the money and hire some agency nurses to fill in when staffing is critically short??? Part of the problem we think is because maybe alot of agency nurses do not know how to use BCMA medication system and it would probably take half the shift to teach them! If they have so much money to implement such an expensive med system, then why are they jeopardizing pt. care with such short staffing? It's criminal how alot of pt's needs aren't being met, but modern technology takes preference over pt care. How sad is this? ?

    I also feel that this BCMA wasn't ment for use in the LTC setting. You could spend up to 20min on one pt especially if he receives 10 meds at a time.ie, taking BP prior to giving hypertensive meds then adding the reading under the comment listing, taking FSBS and adding that reading under the comment listing, then you have to do a TX for that pt at that time,(nebulizer, or dsg)then there's all the scanning of the meds. If the computer is down, then you're really sunk!!! It gets to be ridiculous after a while especially when you have 20+ pts to do say at 0600. The poor agency nurses would never want to come back for sure. Modern technology wins, Pt care goes out the window... Is there no end to this madness??? Do they have agency CNA's that could possibly fill in when you only have 2-NA's for 58 pts and supervisor says,"I have no one to send you." 3/4 of them are total care...It's sooooooooo frustrating
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  3. by   P_RN

    I wasn't familiar with BCMA so I looked it up. (Bar Code Medication Administration )
    And I am not familiar with the VA so I looked up THEIR version.

    My impression is that it may be a great system BUT you don't have sufficient personnel to use it. Our system was the PYXIS..I know it's not the same, but what our hospital did was require that all agencies send their nurses (at the agencies expense) for orientation in the use of ALL machines/computers/documentation/ and pass the hospital med test. If they wanted to be on the list of agencies they HAD to comply. There is NO reason on earth that you should have to accept poorly prepared nurses. You didn't say what 'mode' of care you use, but I believe a team or modified team, where only 1 person is in the machine would be preferable to multiple users attempting to work at giving meds. As I say I haven't come across BCMA other than in journal ads, so correct me please if I am off base.


    Edited to include the testimony URL

    [ June 11, 2001: Message edited by: P_RN ]