Patient Safety With Bedside Medication Verification

Medication errors are associated with a significant amount of deaths. According to the Institute of Medicine, around 1.5 million medication errors occur every year that result in about 7,000 deaths. Astonishingly, 70% of these errors are 먹튀사이트. Medication errors can occur at any stage of medication use that includes ordering, transcribing, dispensing, administering, and monitoring. The right medication should be given to the right patient, at the right time, in the right dosage and via the right route. Error at any stage of the administration of medicine may lead to serious consequences.

The Joint Commission, a healthcare regulatory authority, set National Patient Safety Goals to improve patient safety. “Improving the accuracy of patient identification” topped this list of goals in 2008. The goal requires the “use of at least two [patient] identifiers when providing care, treatment or services.” Two patient identifiers are used while administering medications and blood products or taking blood and other samples for clinical testing. The FDA recommends a bar code solution to decrease the errors and risk of medication event.

Bar code and radio frequency identification (RFID) are two of the technologies that can be used for bedside medication verification and reduce errors that might occur during administration of medicine or blood products.

Patient and the medication data are present in the wrist band of the patients, medicine labels and the nurses ID. These codes (barcodes/RFID) allows for confirmation of the identification of patient, medication, dose, time and route of administration. Before administering a medication or a blood product, the caregivers or the nurse administering the medicine scan these barcodes to verify the details of the medicine and the patient. Using this it is possible to alert them in case of any discrepancies in dose, identity of patients, route, and medication or if the dose of medication is not due. Additionally, other data such as the batch number, expiry dates, etc can also be obtained from the barcodes.

Implementation of bedside medication verification can eliminate errors that might occur during administration of the medicine, for example by reducing the chance of patient receiving either wrong medication or wrong dosage. It improves caregiver’s efficiency without significantly impacting nursing workflow. Improved patient safety reduces adverse events and the associated healthcare cost. Increased health care efficiency and patient safety can translate into revenue from the hospital’s perspective.

While bedside verification systems using traditional bar codes have shown good success in reducing medication administration errors, these systems have not achieved widespread acceptance. These may be due to failure of bedside barcode identification resulting from human error, handheld device error, system error and wristband error.

There might be resistance by the staff to embrace new technology. This may stem from communication gap, preconceived notion about the technology or resistant to accept changing roles. Software glitches, hardware problem associated with the scanning instrument are other barriers related to technology that may affect implementation of bedside medication verification.

Caregivers must be trained to use these technologies before they could be implemented. Language and computer illiteracy makes it more challenging and may require additional training resources to overcome this obstacle.

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