Safety in the Acute Care Setting: Medication Safety (Nursing)

by Samantha Rhea, MSN, RN

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    00:01 So let's talk about medication safety.

    00:04 We give these all the time.

    00:06 So as nurses the problem when we administer medications, we give them day in day out to several patients.

    00:13 One patient may have 26 meds.

    00:16 So you can imagine that in giving medications, it's really important that we do it the right way.

    00:22 So let's look at a framework to help keep safe.

    00:26 So this is called the seven rights of medication safety.

    00:29 First off, we got to think about, hey is this even the right medicine? So the problem with medications as there's a lot of what we call "look-alike", and "sound-alike" drugs.

    00:40 There's a lot of medication names, they're very confusing and very hard to pronounce, especially for a new student.

    00:47 So we want to make sure it's even the right med first.

    00:51 After we do that, we've got to make sure it's the right dose.

    00:55 So when we're making sure we've got the right medicine, is that the appropriate amount of drug for the patient? This could mean way too much medicine or really not enough.

    01:06 You may think, Okay, why does it matter if it's not enough med? Well, that matters, because it will not produce the therapeutic effect that we need it to do.

    01:16 Also, first of all, 'hey, is this even the right guy?' Do you have the right patient? So making sure you do your patient identifier such as, 'hey, sir, can you give me your name?' Also, what's your date of birth? These two patient identifiers are so very important to make sure you're giving the meds to the right person.

    01:36 So here's a great example of this.

    01:38 So when I was taking nursing students to clinical, we went to a rehabilitation center.

    01:44 It's a little bit of a different setting, and patients are just kind of wheeling around and hanging out in the day room.

    01:50 It's not like their traditional room hospital setting.

    01:54 So the nurse went about her business and she saw Mr. Brown and she was gonna go give his meds.

    02:00 So she said, 'Oh, hey, Mr. Brown, how are you doing today? Here's your medications.

    02:05 Well, the patient who took all the meds, well guess what? Wasn't Mr. Brown, it was Mr. Smith.

    02:11 The problem with that setting is that person had a traumatic brain injury, and he was just saying, 'uh, huh' and very agreeable to the nurse because he knew her and he was comfortable.

    02:21 So it seems like such a silly thing but making sure it's the right patient is huge.

    02:28 Next, let's talk about the right route.

    02:30 So this can be a little bit tricky for us as new nursing students but the right route is really important, because it's gonna matter how the patient receives and metabolizes that drug.

    02:42 The other thing is certain meds can only be given a certain route.

    02:46 And if we give it the wrong route, that can mean the patient doesn't get the med or it can be dangerous.

    02:53 So when we talk about route, what I mean by that, can it be by mouth? Can it be in their IV? Or is it going to be an injection, for example.

    03:02 The other thought is the timing of that drug.

    03:05 So the time the medication is given is really important.

    03:09 Here's an example, antibiotics for sure.

    03:12 We want to give them at a certain time and so many hours per day.

    03:17 Also to think about some medications like cholesterol-reducing medicines work much, much better in the evening time because our digestion slows down, and we hold on to that drug a little bit longer.

    03:29 all need less cholesterol-- or more cholesterol control, right? The other thought is the right reason.

    03:36 So this is also something new as a nursing student that we've got to think about, 'hey, not only am I giving this drug, but is it for the right reason that patient's receiving it? A lot of drugs have multi use, so we need to consider this in our patient.

    03:50 So we know to look for how the patient's supposed to react to it.

    03:55 And don't forget, write documentation.

    03:58 So I need to make sure I document that med appropriately in case that patient goes somewhere else to another unit, they need to know that that person got that drug.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Safety in the Acute Care Setting: Medication Safety (Nursing) by Samantha Rhea, MSN, RN is from the course Safe and Effective Patient Care (Nursing).

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Right client
    2. Right documentation
    3. Right route
    4. Right nurse
    5. Right medication price
    1. Administering the medication to Sally Smith
    2. Administering the medication intravenously
    3. Administering the medication at 1600
    4. Administering 2 mg of Zofran

    Author of lecture Safety in the Acute Care Setting: Medication Safety (Nursing)

     Samantha Rhea, MSN, RN

    Samantha Rhea, MSN, RN

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