Medication error in health care systems

dc.creatorKoontz, Jamey Megan Engineeringen_US
dc.description.abstractUSA Today (2000) reports medication errors as the eighth leading cause of death in the United States; thus, it is a crucial issue in the health care industry. In this study, medication errors are defined as any error in the process of prescribing, transcribing, dispensing, or administering a drug, whether adverse consequences occur or not (Leape, 1994). Medication errors are classified as either potential or actual errors. A potential error is a mistake in prescribing, transcribing, dispensing, or administering that is detected and corrected through intervention before actual medication administration (American Society of Hospital Pharmacists, 1993). An actual error is a mistake in the medication administration process that is not detected prior to administration. An actual medication error can lead to an adverse event, which is an injury resulting from medical intervention with no relation to the underlying condition of the patient (Kohn, Corrigan, & Donaldson, 1999). One of the more comprehensive studies estimates that more than 1.3 million people are injured each year due to adverse events, and approximately 180,000 die partly due to these injuries (Brennan et al., 1991). After an investigation, approximately 69% of these injuries were the result of errors that could have been prevented (Leape et al., 1993). The medication administration process within a hospital works as a system to produce quality patient care, but errors are often the result of failures in the system's design (Leape, 1995). The objective of this study is to analyze the medication administration process at XYZ Medical Center (XYZ) and to determine ways to significantly reduce medication errors. The medication administration process is defined in this study as the process from the point at which the doctor prescribes a medication to the point of administration. The process involves physicians, nurses, health limit coordinators, pharmacists, technicians, and transporters. The entire medication administration process is broken into four sub-processes: ordering, transcription, dispensing and delivery, and administration. Each of these processes and the roles of the people involved will be discussed later in Chapter III.
dc.publisherTexas Tech Universityen_US
dc.subjectMedication errorsen_US
dc.titleMedication error in health care systems
dc.typeThesis Engineering Engineering Tech University


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