I have no idea the ranking on med errors. There are multiple reasons for them. I'm trying to think of the ones I've seen that stuck in my mind. One was buspirone and bupropion. The pharmacist who dispensed it reached in the wrong box, since they would be side by side in alphabetical order. Fortunately I picked that one up before I gave it. A big one is heparin because people don't read labels and use the wrong strength. Personally I had one because the tech gave me the wrong drug, and when I brought it up, they wanted to argue with me that it was just the generic. Another time the clerk handed me the wrong package, thank heavens I check them before I leave the pharmacy. What they'd given me was 100tabs of 8 mg dilaudid. We had a little discussion over this new tech trying to tell me I didn't know what I took. I've seen med errors happen because nurses have far to many patients to give meds to and they are always running and don't have time for the brain to kick in. Errors can be made because the drs handwritting is bad, or they don't write it clearly when its a drug with a decimal.
I think only about 3 people in this world can deal with decimal points.
Sometimes they don't take time to check and give the med to the wrong patient.
I've seen one where the patient was given too much digoxin because the dr hadn't written the order correctly and the nurse didn't pick up that it was way too much for a dose of digoxin. I think we will have more now in the wrong amount category because nurses aren't taught to do the math and not depend on a pharmacist. There are checks all along the way, but if one link in those checks fail with their part of it, there are errors, and a big part of the failures is because people just have too much to do. I was bored with giving meds in no time, so I learned about each med and what it does and the side effects. It helped me catch the errors.
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