DeLuca & Weizenbaum, Ltd.
Call Today for a
FREE Consultation
Toll-Free: 888-876-9415
Phone: 401-354-7233
View Our Practice Areas

Defining medication omission errors

Most people in Providence County would likely associate errors involving a patient's medication to instances where he or she was either given an incorrect dosage of a prescribed medication or administered the wrong medication altogether. While such errors certainly rank among the more common types of medication errors, another less-apparent yet potentially as damaging a mistake is a medication omission. The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists defines an omission error as "the failure to administer an ordered dose to a patient before the next scheduled dose, if any."

Medications prescribed to attack infectious agents or assist with a course of treatment may be vital in producing positive patient outcomes. Thus, the omission of a medication could very well be just as serious as too much of it being given. One may wonder how it can be possible for a clinician to overlook the administration of medication (particularly those administered intravenously) given the many delivery methods and protocols in place to account for them. A study undertaken by the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority revealed the following to be among the most common reasons why IV medications were never given:

  •          IV medications not sent with patient during transfer, or not being connected, hung, or started upon his or her arrival in a new unit.
  •          IV pumps or drug delivery systems never being activated.
  •          IV lines becoming occluded or being mistakenly clamped.
  •          IV's being accidently discontinued or stopped.
  •          Empty or defective IV bags not being replaced.
  •          Nurses becoming distracted.

To prevent omission errors, the ASHP strongly recommends nurses stick to scheduled administration times and document any refusals by a patient to take a prescribed medication or any medication availability issues. A lack of such documentation in a patient's medical record could be seen as evidence a required medication was never given. 

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

Contact The Firm

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Providence Personal Injury Office

199 North Main Street
Providence, RI 02903

Toll Free: 888-876-9415
Phone: 401-354-7233
Fax: 401-453-1501
Providence Law Office Map