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Posted: January 5th, 2023

Medication administration in a health care setting

For this assessment, you will develop a 3-5 page paper that examines a safety quality issue pertaining to medication administration in a health care setting. You will analyze the issue and examine potential evidence-based and best-practice solutions from the literature as well as the role of nurses and other stakeholders in addressing the issue. One safety and quality issue pertaining to medication administration in a healthcare setting is the risk of medication errors. Medication errors can occur at any stage of the medication process, from prescribing and dispensing to administering and monitoring. They can have serious consequences, including harm to patients and even death.

Some of the factors that can contribute to medication errors in a healthcare setting include:

Complex medication regimens: Patients who are taking multiple medications or who have complex dosing instructions may be at greater risk for medication errors.

Communication breakdowns: Miscommunication or lack of communication between healthcare providers can lead to errors in prescribing, dispensing, or administering medications.

Lack of standardization: Lack of standardization in medication administration processes can lead to confusion and errors.

Insufficient training: Healthcare providers who are not adequately trained in medication administration may be more likely to make errors.

To address this safety and quality issue, healthcare organizations can implement a range of strategies, including:

Implementing medication reconciliation processes: Medication reconciliation involves comparing a patient’s medication list to the medications they are currently taking and identifying any discrepancies or potential errors.

Implementing barcode medication administration systems: Barcode medication administration systems use technology to verify that the right medication is being given to the right patient at the right dose.

Providing education and training: Ensuring that healthcare providers are adequately trained in medication administration can help to reduce the risk of errors.

Implementing standardization: Establishing standard processes for medication administration can help to reduce confusion and ensure that medications are administered safely.

Addressing the safety and quality issue of medication errors in a healthcare setting requires a multi-faceted approach that involves a range of strategies and interventions.
Health care organizations and professionals strive to create safe environments for patients; however, due to the complexity of the health care system, maintaining safety can be a challenge. Since nurses comprise the largest group of health care professionals, a great deal of responsibility falls in the hands of practicing nurses. Quality improvement (QI) measures and safety improvement plans are effective interventions to reduce medical errors and sentinel events such as medication errors, falls, infections, and deaths. A 2000 Institute of Medicine (IOM) report indicated that almost one million people are harmed annually in the United States, (Kohn et al., 2000) and 210,000–440,000 die as a result of medical errors (Allen, 2013).
The role of the baccalaureate nurse includes identifying and explaining specific patient risk factors, incorporating evidence-based solutions to improving patient safety and coordinating care. A solid foundation of knowledge and understanding of safety organizations such as Quality and Safety Education for Nurses (QSEN), the Institute of Medicine (IOM), and The Joint Commission and its National Patient Safety Goals (NPSGs) program is vital to practicing nurses with regard to providing and promoting safe and effective patient care.
You are encouraged to complete the Identifying Safety Risks and Solutions activity. This activity offers an opportunity to review a case study and practice identifying safety risks and possible solutions. We have found that learners who complete course activities and review resources are more successful with first submissions. Completing course activities is also a way to demonstrate course engagement.
Demonstration of Proficiency
By successfully completing this assessment, you will demonstrate your proficiency in the following course competencies and assessment criteria:
• Competency 1: Analyze the elements of a successful quality improvement initiative.
o Explain evidence-based and best-practice solutions to improve patient safety focusing on medication administration and reducing costs.
• Competency 2: Analyze factors that lead to patient safety risks.
o Explain factors leading to a specific patient-safety risk focusing on medication administration.
• Competency 4: Explain the nurse’s role in coordinating care to enhance quality and reduce costs.
o Explain how nurses can help coordinate care to increase patient safety with medication administration and reduce costs.
o Identify stakeholders with whom nurses would need to coordinate to drive quality and safety enhancements with medication administration.
• Competency 5: Apply professional, scholarly, evidence-based strategies to communicate in a manner that supports safe and effective patient care.
o Organize content so ideas flow logically with smooth transitions; contains few errors in grammar or punctuation, word choice, and spelling.
o Apply APA formatting to in-text citations and references exhibiting nearly flawless adherence to APA format.
References
Allen, M. (2013). How many die from medical mistakes in U.S. hospitals? Retrieved from https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2013/09/20/224507654/how-many-die-from-medical-mistakes-in-u-s-hospitals.
Kohn, L. T., Corrigan, J., & Donaldson, M. S. (Eds.). (2000). To err is human: Building a safer health system. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.
Professional Context
As a baccalaureate-prepared nurse, you will be responsible for implementing quality improvement (QI) and patient safety measures in health care settings. Effective quality improvement measures result in systemic and organizational changes, ultimately leading to the development of a patient safety culture.
Scenario
Consider a previous experience or hypothetical situation pertaining to medication errors, and consider how the error could have been prevented or alleviated with the use of evidence-based guidelines.
Choose a specific condition of interest surrounding a medication administration safety risk and incorporate evidence-based strategies to support communication and ensure safe and effective care.
For this assessment:
• Analyze a current issue or experience in clinical practice surrounding a medication administration safety risk and identify a quality improvement (QI) initiative in the health care setting.
Instructions
The purpose of this assessment is to better understand the role of the baccalaureate-prepared nurse in enhancing quality improvement (QI) measures that address a medication administration safety risk. This will be within the specific context of patient safety risks at a health care setting of your choice. You will do this by exploring the professional guidelines and best practices for improving and maintaining patient safety in health care settings from organizations such as QSEN and the IOM. Looking through the lens of these professional best practices to examine the current policies and procedures currently in place at your chosen organization and the impact on safety measures for patients surrounding medication administration, you will consider the role of the nurse in driving quality and safety improvements. You will identify stakeholders in QI improvement and safety measures as well as consider evidence-based strategies to enhance quality of care and promote medication administration safety in the context of your chosen health care setting.
Be sure that your plan addresses the following, which corresponds to the grading criteria in the scoring guide. Please study the scoring guide carefully so that you know what is needed for a distinguished score.
• Explain factors leading to a specific patient-safety risk focusing on medication administration.
• Explain evidence-based and best-practice solutions to improve patient safety focusing on medication administration and reducing costs.
• Explain how nurses can help coordinate care to increase patient safety with medication administration and reduce costs.
• Identify stakeholders with whom nurses would coordinate to drive safety enhancements with medication administration.
• Communicate using writing that is clear, logical, and professional, with correct grammar and spelling, using current APA style.
Additional Requirements
• Length of submission: 3–5 pages, plus title and reference pages.
• Number of references: Cite a minimum of 4 sources of scholarly or professional evidence that support your findings and considerations. Resources should be no more than 5 years old.
• APA formatting: References and citations are formatted according to current APA style.

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