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MEDICATION ERRORS - Essay Example

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Medication Errors [Name] Nursing [Date] Medication Errors A medication error can be defined as a blunder in the treatment procedure that has led to or can potentially result in adverse effects on the patient’s health (Spath, 2011). This terminology refers to the process of treatment falling below the required standard…
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Download file to see previous pages They can also be classified from a contextual perspective, in terms of the medicines, time, place and people involved (Spath, 2011). Modal classification is the third type, which refers to the manner in which the error took place, for example, errors can occur by substitution, omission or repetition. Patients’ safety and medical errors represent a subject that has recently gained both public and scientific attention. This is due to the fact that numerous medical errors have occurred, and lately on a regular basis (Jox, Schneider, Borasio & Dietz, 2010). These errors are accompanied by an increased cost in treatment, in addition to a number of moral consequences. Several barriers concerned with patient safety and medication errors have been identified. These include poor leadership and absence of feedback on incidences concerning these errors. Feedback would enable the medical system to monitor the occurrence of these errors on a national level, and assist the authorities in formulating the appropriate preventative measures. Voluntary reporting systems have been created by organizations such as the Institute of Safe Medical Practice Canada (ISMP Canada) and results have shown that these systems can help reduce the number of mistakes in medication from human error (David, n.d). Medication error reports are reviewed by the Division of Medication Error Prevention and Analysis (DMEPA) (US Food and Drug Administration, n.d). It includes a prevention program which evaluates cases of medical errors, casualties, and uses this data to formulate preventative measures against medication errors. Fortunately, most medication errors are due to omission as opposed to commission; hence, there is a certain level of preventability for the occurrence of these mistakes. To formulate preventative measures, one must analyze the underlying cause of these errors. These errors usually occur upon failure of a medical service provider to detect the state of disease, hence, prescribes the incorrect drug therapy, failure to detect the mechanism of drug interaction, negligence to patient’s drug allergies and general patient knowledge deficits (Harn, n.d). The above mentioned errors can be avoided if time is taken to counsel the prescriber and improving his/her working conditions (Harn, n.d). In order for the prescriber to reduce the probability of medication errors occurring, he/she can learn ways to keep focused on the patient and make sure diagnosis is made with out any external distractions. The work performed by medical professionals can be extremely stressful at times and these conditions make them prone to making mistakes. Creating a stress free environment can help reduce the number errors. This can be achieved by reducing the amount of caffeine intake and maintaining a healthy diet, improving relations among employees, ensuring that the employees get adequate sleep, working goals should be realistic to avoid overworking employees and bad habits, such as alcohol intake, should be prohibited during or before working hours. The patient can also play a role in preventing medication errors by gaining knowledge on the medication that has been prescribed to him/her. He or she should be aware of the purpose of the medication and what disease he/she is taking the medication for. The patient should also try to use the same pharmacy for one prescription, this way pharmacists can detect any inconsistencies that the doctor might have made ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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