Potential medication error

  1. Hello, I am a nurse of 3 years with no prior medication errors. I recently started working at a new hospital and thought things were going well. The other day I received an email from my floor manger asking if I knew anything about a med error that happened. I took care of a patient who was in the hospital for some respiratory issues and also had diabetes. She had normal saline ordered and running. Apparently when night shift came on they found D5 1/2 NS infusing. I remember while I was on the phone getting report for a new patient the nursing assistant came to me and said Mr. smiths IVFs are empty. I turned to the nurse next to me and asked her kindly if she could hang a new bag. With all the hustle and bustle I forget to check her work. I am unsure If this is the result of her error or if I mistakingly hung it at some point during the day. we were also having a computer troubles that day. I understand even if the other nurse did hang it, I am mostly responsible. I told my nurse manager I am unsure of what happened. I am really nervous. I have not heard back about this incidence and its been over a week. She never said anything penalizing to me and figured I would hear an update from her. What should I do? Am I over worrying on something I really did not know what happened?
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    About Mjags5

    Joined: May '08; Posts: 3
    RN; from US
    Specialty: 3 year(s) of experience in Neuroscience, Orthopedics,Med-Surge


  3. by   xoemmylouox
    Well you learned a valuable lesson, and I wouldn't stress too much at this point. Always double check things, especially if another person helps you.
  4. by   NurseDirtyBird
    I don't want to say medication errors aren't a big deal, because they are; med errors can potentially kill someone. But they happen because nurses are human, and I have yet to meet a nurse that has never made a med error. In your four years of nursing, you've never made an error that you know of.
    If this was even considered a med error for you (shame on the other nurse for not performing their safety checks), as long as there was no harm done to the patient, the error will be written up, you'll explain what you learned, and you will likely never make that mistake again. If there was harm done to the patient there may be further consequences, but maybe not. Owning up to your mistake and showing that you've learned from it goes a long way. Trying to cover your mistakes is what will get you into a lot of trouble.
    Don't beat yourself up over it. Errors happen. I know that's easier said than done, because I feel like a total idiot when I make one (2 in 7 years - that I know of - not bad!) and spend a day or two wondering if I'm a bad nurse. I'm pretty sure I'm not, and one med error doesn't make you a bad nurse either. When you get to 25 egregious errors in a short period of time, you can start thinking you're a bad nurse .
  5. by   LTCnewbie45
    My dilemma....came in to relieve dayshift nurse....to whom did not carry out an order given to her by physician to put fluids on a patient for dehydration. DON knew it had not been done and said nightshft could do it. Order given 3 pm. This is serious med error......on that nurse but DON blamed me ?????? Im confused........