Medication safety

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It is completely devastating to make any type of medication error, even if there is no negative outcome to the patient. Although there are guidelines in place to check and recheck before giving medications, we are human and can easily overlook some steps. I agree that newborns are at risk and that there should be additional steps in place to even triple check medications given to them. Of course textbooks can tell us to check the patients name, dose, route, and allergies, but can they be missed. Yes! They can easily be missed. Often, many of the stories I have read about involve new graduate nurses still in training and student nurses. Although they are not the only ones, many nurses and varying degrees of experience can make errors. I myself made an error when I was still in training as a new nurse that completely turned my life around. There was no negative outcome, but I sure did learn the biggest lesson I could imagine. Why was the error made? I was in a hurry, didn’t follow all the steps to verify the correct medication and patient. I read the patients name on the medication and quickly hung the IV piggy back. Something popped in my head just moments later to check everything the pharmacist had typed on the bag. Quickly I turned off IV pump just in time. The medication was 4 times the needed dose for an infant! The pharmacist had made an error in the weight of the patient and gave me medication that was way more than what was needed. Thankfully this ended well. Never again am I in too much of a hurry to look at every detail of a medication.

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