Medication Safety at EvergreenHealth
Your health and safety is our top priority. That's why we use the latest technology to help prevent medication errors and guarantee the "Five Rights" of medication administration:
- the right patient
- the right medication
- the right dose
- the right time
- the right route (oral, topical, etc.)
When hospitalized, you'll wear a barcoded wristband that corresponds to a computerized record of your medication history, including allergies and side-effects.
When it's time to administer medications, your nurse scans the barcode on the medication and the barcode on your wristband to ensure a match. If any one of a number of qualifying factors do not match, your nurse is alerted to double check, verify or call the doctor – before administering the medication.
Administered medications are automatically logged into your computerized record, eliminating the possibility that medication will be given more than once.
Automated Medication Dispensing Cabinets
Automated medication dispensing cabinets on the patient units eliminate the most common errors that occur with controlled substances, such as pain-killing narcotics.
With identifying passwords and barcoding, nurses are only allowed access to the selected medication. If the patient's record lists an allergy to that medication, the cabinet will not allow access.
Computerized Physician Order Entry
This powerful tool eliminates handwritten, paper-based orders and provides physicians the safest method of ordering treatments.
All physician orders are automatically checked for a variety of contraindications that might make the drug harmful, including food, drug and environmental allergies, duplicate ingredients and therapy, and minimum/maximum dose checking.
Your Role in Medication Safety
Here's how you can help us prevent medication errors:
- Provide your physician with a current list of your prescription medicines, vitamins, herbals and supplements.
- Know what your medications are for.
- Make sure family members know your medications.
- Ask your physician what medication you are receiving.
- Make sure the physician or nurse checks your wristband and asks your name before giving you medicine.
- Don't be afraid to speak up if you think you are about to get the wrong medicine.
- Tell your nurse or physician if you don't feel well after receiving a medicine. If you think you are having a reaction or experiencing side effects, ask for help immediately.