Administering Medication

Medication can be administered once the nurse assesses the patient and determines that the medication can be administered safely. The nurse follows implementation procedures for administering medication.

• Check the prescriber's medication order

The initial step in administering medication is to read the medication order that is written by the prescriber to make sure that the proper medication and dose is administered to the patient. The prescriber's medication order is found in the patient's chart.

• Check the Medication Administration Record (MAR)

The medication administration record is a transcription of the prescriber's medication order. Many times the MAR is a computer-generated document, but sometimes there will be handwritten entries in the MAR. Compare the MAR with the prescriber's medication order to assure that the proper medication, dose, and other aspects of the medication order have been properly transcribed.

• The nurse should check all medications prescribed to the patient even if he or she will not be administering all of the medications while taking care of the patient.

The MAR lists all medication that the patient receives including those already given to the patient and medication that has been discontinued. It is critical for the nurse to review all medications and not just those that will be given on the nurse's shift because previous medications may still be active in the patient's body. Remember that some drugs have a long half-life making them still a potential conflict with other medication days after it was administered to the patient.

• Check the patient's allergies

Although the patient's chart might indicate that the patient does not have any allergies to medication or food, the nurse must review whether or not the patient has allergies before administering medication. Sometimes the patient may not have recalled any allergies when the patient's history was taken, but will recall an allergy after being questioned again by the nurse.

• Create your own medication administration worksheet

Although the MAR lists medications and the times they are to be administered, the patient may be scheduled for tests and procedures that conflict with the medication schedule. It is best to create a medication administration worksheet that schedules both medication and the patient's other activities so there is one schedule for the patient.

• Check PRN (as needed) medications

It is common for some medications to be administered to the patient by the nurse on an as needed basis (PRN) such as analgesics (pain medication). PRN medication isn't scheduled on the MAR but is listed in a different section of the MAR. Therefore, the nurse must determine when PRN medication was administered and what PRN medication was administered before giving any medication. This avoids any potential interaction between medications.

0 0

Post a comment