Medication errors can cause harm due to wrong medication while being under the care of a medical practitioner. They can however be prevented through various ways. There are indications from research that 60 percent of patients within hospitals miss their medications at some point. This translates to about 6.8 medications missed by every patient. In America alone, these medication errors result in injury for 1.5 million patients annually.
Various factors are associated with medication errors in hospitals. Some of these factors include doctor fatigue, resource insufficiency, and doctor despair, lack of support and lack of job security. These factors result in poor functioning of the doctors hence the medical errors. Such errors can thus be eradicated through improvement of the doctors’ working conditions and better training for nurses and doctors alike.
One of the most common medication errors is under prescription. This error is identified due to the presence of describing low dosages of a suitable drug or failing to prescribe a suitable drug. Some of the reasons why doctors under prescribe include fear of interactions between drugs; unawareness of the suitability of treatment and doubts concerning effectiveness of the drug.
Among the elderly, there is a tendency to avoid treatment which results in risk treatment mismatch. This refers to the increase in risk due to lack of aggressiveness in taking medications. It can be avoided through a collaborative approach that ensures that administration of the correct medication is carried out to all patients. In order to better fulfill their responsibilities, health professionals should be trained more and provided with sufficient resources for their work. They should also adhere to guidelines and dosages available in drug labels.
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