Nurses Key to Care Coordination
The study by the Interdisciplinary Nursing Quality Research Initiative (INQRI) appeared in the January issue of Qualitative Health Research. The study details 10 clinical reasoning practices and processes that 50 nurses at 10 hospitals have identified to prevent medication errors.
- Educating patients about their medication;
- Considering all factors related to the patient;
- Advocating for patients with the pharmacy;
- Coordinating care with physicians;
- Independently reconciling medications with patients' records;
- Verifying medications and doses with colleagues;
- Coping with interruptions and distractions;
- Interpreting physicians' orders;
- Documenting near misses;
- Communicating openly with physicians, pharmacists and other team members.
This is not breaking news. Everything on that list would prompt a knowing nod from nurses.
However, these findings also give those who aren't nurses a better idea of the challenges that nurses face every day and the skills they need to do their job effectively. Imagine the sum total of these 10 focus points for each patient, multiply it by the number of patients under a nurse's care at just about any time and on no particular floor, and you might have a better idea of the pressures on time that are placed upon nurses on any given 8- or 12-hour shift.
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