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Undocumented nurse medical errors - Essay Example

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The researcher will state the practical problem, identify the most important ethical questions and the theoretical bases for his analysis, discuss arguments and counterarguments, including their specific ethical concepts and supporting facts, name options, and choose and explain his final decisions…
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Undocumented nurse medical errors
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Undocumented nurse medical errors

Download file to see previous pages... The researcher starts with description of his first day at his first job. His nurse trainer was evidently flustered with her numerous tasks in the hospital. The researcher followed her to a patient’s room, where she administered medication. The patient was recovering from a car accident, where he suffered from some chest and abdominal trauma, as well as a badly-broken leg. The researcher was confused, because the name on the door was not the same in the med chart. He returned to the nursing station, where she documented the medication. After opening the patient’s chart, she was distressed to find out that she gave the wrong medicine. She checked the patient’s chart for allergies and was comforted that the latter had no allergies with the incorrect medication. However, the patient complained of dizziness and nausea later on, and the nurse did not provide the pain meds as scheduled. The patient also showed signs of discomfort for several hours. The nurse closely watched the patient all evening and up to the next shift, since she volunteered to cover it because a nurse called in sick. The next evening, this same patient was assigned to me. The researcher checked his chart and was surprised that the medication error was not documented, and that the normal dose of pain medication was documented. During his dinner break, the patient had difficulty in breathing and went into arrest. The patient died and autopsy showed that he died from an embolus to the lung. This was a probable unavoidable complication of the injuries. But since the patient experienced pain the evening before, his family members believed that the nursing staff neglected to observe him for complications. They said that they consider suing the facility and I know that I will be named in the suit. Case Study Analysis: 8-Step Model for Ethical Decision Making The case with this patient involves an ethical dilemma of reporting the medication error of my colleague. I will examine this case using the 8-Step Model of Ethical Decision Making (Bennett-Woods, 2001). I will determine the facts of the case and all information needed to properly analyze and resolve this issue. I will state the practical problem, identify the most important ethical questions and the theoretical bases for my analysis, discuss arguments and counterarguments, including their specific ethical concepts and supporting facts, name options, and choose and explain my final decisions. Step One: Gather Relevant Information Clinical indications. Patient was recovering from a car accident, where he suffered from chest and abdominal trauma and a badly-broken leg. The most common effects of car accidents are head, chest, pelvis, and abdominal trauma (Schmucker et al., 2010). The patient complained of dizziness and nausea, which can be the result of his injuries or the incorrectly given medicine. One of the primary tasks of nurses is drug administration and it occupies around 40% of their work time (Armitage & Knapman, 2003, cited in Tang et al., 2007, p.448). Administering drugs have become more complex, especially when there were only 656 medications in 1961, but now there are more than 8000 medicine being prescribed, with more than 17000 trade and generic names in North America (Tang et al., 2007, p.448). Giving medication is “one of the most error-prone steps of the medication-use process, with 34% of all errors originating in this phase” (Bates et al. 1995, cited in Helmons, Wargel, & Daniels, 2009, p.1202). Some studies discovered that medication errors normally take place during the prescription and administration stages and can compose 65% to 87% of the total number of medication errors (Bates et al. 1993, 1995; Benjamin 2003, cited in Tang et al., 2007, p.448). Less than 2% of incorrect medication actions are not intercepted by the patients’ bedside (Helmons, Wargel, & Daniels, 2009, p.1202). The patient also showed signs of discomfort for several hours. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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