Medication errors have become a national issue. At least 1.5 million people are harmed annually with a containment cost of 3.5 billion dollars spent to treat drug related injuries. Dementia patients living at home must be recognized as being particularly more vulnerable to medication errors.
In the care environment of a patient’s home, there are a multitude of unique variables that may contribute to the challenge of assuring medication errors do not occur. Challenges present themselves for our visually impaired patients, patients who live alone, patients with multiple medications, and the lack of an individual caregiver who can assume the role for medication administration in order to ensure complete adherence to the prescribed regimen.
A medication error is defined as “any preventible event that may cause or lead to inappropriate medication use or patient harm when the medication is in the control of the patient, or consumer”.
ElderCare at Home’s field staff are responsible for assuring the patient’s five rights are assured: right patient, right medication, right dose, right route, and right time. Knowledge of each individual patients allergies, medication indications, and contradictions, as well as any adverse reactions, is a basic responsibility of all our practicing nurses.
To find out how our medication management programs can help you or someone you care for, contact us at 800-209-4342.