Medication Reconciliation And Prevention Of Medication Errors

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Medication Reconciliation and Prevention of Medication Errors
Kakeela S. Coaker, RN, BSN
Spring Hill College

Medication Reconciliation and Prevention of Medication Errors
Adverse drug events are the sixth leading cause of death in the United States and represent a significant financial burden to healthcare institutes at an estimated cost of $5.6 million per hospital per year (Meguerditchian N, Krotneva, Reidel, Huang, & Tamblyn, 2013). According to The Joint Commission (2006), medication reconciliation is the process of comparing a patient’s medication orders to all of the medications the patient has been taking. This reconciliation is done to identify and resolve medication discrepancies, which are unintended or unexplained
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These errors can be prevented on the administration and prescribing side if the task of medication reconciliation is performed correctly. Medication reconciliation is defined as a “formal process of obtaining a complete and accurate list of each patient’s current home medications – including name, dosage, frequency, and route – comparing the physician’s admission, transfer, and discharge orders to the list.” (Meguerditchian N, Krotneva, Reidel, Huang, & Tamblyn, 2013). There have been several studies performed across the world to try to comprise a system that will successfully accomplish medication reconciliation. Some of these studies have been successful and others have failed to find a solution. There have been studies that have utilized a pharmacy technician in the emergency department to facilitate the input of patient’s medication reconciliation prior to admission. Other studies have relied on the pharmacist to obtain the information. Most studies involved the primary nurse providing care to the patient to obtain the medication reconciliation information. There have been several forms of documentation tried on trial bases. These forms of documentation range from a paper medication administration record (MAR) to an electronic medication administration record (EMAR) that utilizes today’s technology. Upon completion of my research it was found that the best evidence based practice was a uniformed
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