5 Tips to reduce Med Errors
More than 60% of medication errors are caused by poor communication. The first step in reducing medication errors should be promoting effective communication among physicians, pharmacists and nurses. When in doubt, nurses need to be confident and ask questions. A quick call to the pharmacy can be a valuable resource for nurses to clarify a doctor’s order.
The Joint Commission and the Institute for Safe Medication Practices have published a list of high-alert medications. These high risk medications include potassium chloride, insulin, IV pain drugs and blood thinners.
Errors can occur at any point in the healthcare system. Acknowledging that errors happen, learning from them and working to prevent future errors is a shift from blame and punishment to analysis of causes of errors and making changes to improve.
5 tips for long-term care facilities
- Know the 5’R’s
- Inform patients of the reason for all medications
- Work as a team with doctors and pharmacists
- Be confident in questioning medication orders
- Report medication errors