The overall view of medication errors within a hospital setup inclines to the methods being used to measure medication errors thus an all-inclusive perspective of the same is obtained by incorporating several methods (Kaushal et al., 2001). Medication errors can be measured using three definitive taxonomical lenses which are structures, processes, and outcomes (PSNet, 2017). Structural measures outline the medication errors that arise from adverse shortcomings on key hospital resources. Process measures outline the defects that arise courtesy of negligence and failure of professionals to adhere to safety standards. The metrics on outcome are mainly geared towards determining the prevalence and the level of incidence of medication errors (Rodriguez, 2016, Aspden et al., 2007)).
Obtaining data related to medication errors in a healthcare setting is normally a challenge due to various factors which include privacy, flexibility and policy and trust (Farb et al., 2003, PSNet, 207). About privacy, the collection of patient's data on medication error is normally a problem due to the tight privacy rules enforced within the architecture of a hospital setting. Patients' personal information is subject to rules and regulations defined under medical law and ethics that protects their privacy thus making it difficult to collect data for analysis. On the other hand, healthcare settings lack flexible data collection mediums that provide comprehensive information regarding a particular subject. Lastly, health care institutions make it hard for an individual to access data due to policy and trust issues as a standard operating procedure that aims to provide adequate support services and maximum levels of care for patients.
Medication errors are measured using several methods. Some of these methods are; retrospective chart review, patient reports, claims/administrative data, automated surveillance and voluntary error reporting systems (Flynn et al., 2002). The relevance of medication errors in nursing is the fact that medication errors have serious implications for the safety of the patient. The detection of errors encourages better and efficient practices o dispensing and prescription of medicine (Bates, 2007).
Aspden, P., Wolcott, J. A., Bootman, J. L., & Cronenwett, L. R. (2007). Preventing medication errors (pp. 367-408). National Acad. Press.Bates, D. W. (2007). Preventing medication errors: A summary. American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy, 64(14).Farb, D., Koopsen, C., Young, C., & UniversityOfHealthCare. (2003). Medication errors. Los Angeles, CA: UniversityOfHealthCare.
Flynn, E. A., Barker, K. N., Pepper, G. A., Bates, D. W., & Mikeal, R. L. (2002). Comparison of methods for detecting medication errors in 36 hospitals and skilled-nursing facilities. American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy, 59(5), 436-446.
Kaushal, R., Bates, D. W., Landrigan, C., McKenna, K. J., Clapp, M. D., Federico, F., & Goldmann, D. A. (2001). Medication errors and adverse drug events in pediatric inpatients. Jama, 285(16), 2114-2120.
PSNet. (2017). Measurement of Patient Safety | AHRQ Patient Safety Network. Retrieved from https://psnet.ahrq.gov/primers/primer/35/measurement-of-patient-safetyRodriguez, G. R., Frank, J., & TRAINEX (Firm),. (2016). Preventing Medication Errors: Part 2.
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