Should CMA be sharing medication cart keys with other CMA/LN during shift

by nmzimm28 nmzimm28 (New) New

Specializes in SNF/LTC/Memory/ALF. Has 6 years experience.

Soooo I'm a float pool/travel CMA in Oregon (SNF & LTC) and recently I've picked up shifts at a facility that has some questionable practices.  At this particular place I have two halls with about 16 residents each to pass meds to (two different med carts and   two sets of keys).  There is also another hall in which I have 5/6 additional residents; also a separate med cart with another set of keys.  The last cart I described has me sharing another CMA.  When I get to the floor I expect to count @ every cart that I am expected to pass medications from.  This facility will only count me in @ the "shared" cart if I make a big deal about it.    So sharing a cart seems wrong as hell but fine if that's how they run things buuuuut not making sure to have all staff touching that cart count in & out----is starting to make concerned.  

The second thing that has me worried is that with each hall- there is a LN stationed--I have had different nurses demand the keys to the cart with no explanation as to what or why they need them.  Soooo in my mind---I'm a travel CMA, not trying to make waves when I show up to places but I also have no idea who I just handed the keys off to.......all I know is I will be the one who will be held responsible if anything is off or missing.  Side note-- LNs have separate carts for treatments.  All other facilities I have floated to the LNs don't ever ask me for the keys.......even if they need scissors--they have me grab them. 

Can anyone in LTC/SNF please tell me if I should be worried?  Do I need to report the facility and continue floating there or should I request to be unassigned to future shifts?    


6,208 Posts

Have never worked in your position/scenario, so will say in general that as a licensed nurse I would not work in a situation others have undocumented access to meds for which I am solely responsible on paper. Nope. That is one of those things that can go wrong way too easily and in a very bad way. It doesn't matter what the facility's excuse is or what supposed hardship has caused them to do things this way, but I would not participate. General MO is to not take on big risks so that an employer can get away with not doing what they should be doing.

No need to get into the weeds about it with them, just don't work in those circumstances.

Edited by JKL33