Medication Administration Basics

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30 Questions

What does the abbreviation 'bid' stand for?

Twice a day

What is the purpose of the 'First Check' in Safe Medication Administration?

To verify the client's information and medication details

What is the purpose of the 'Third Check' in Safe Medication Administration?

To recheck the label on the container

What does the abbreviation 'gtt' stand for?

Drop

What is the 'Right Route' of Medication Administration?

The method of administering the medication

What is the purpose of the 'Ten Rights' of Medication Administration?

To ensure safe medication administration and prevent errors

What is the first step in instilling eye medications?

Remove gloves and perform hand hygiene

What should you do if the patient blinks or closes their eye during medication instillation?

Repeat the procedure

Where should you apply gentle pressure with a clean tissue after instilling eye medications?

On the nasolacrimal duct

How should ointment be applied to the conjunctiva?

As a thin ribbon along the inner edge of the lower eyelid

Why is it essential to avoid pressing directly against the patient's eyeball?

To prevent eye injury

What should you do after instilling eye medications?

Ask the patient to close their eyes gently

Why should you warm medication to room temperature?

To facilitate easier instillation

How should you position a patient's head when administering eardrops?

With the ear to be treated facing up

What is the purpose of stabilizing the patient's head with their own hand?

To prevent movement during instillation

Why should you not force cerumen into the ear canal?

It may push the cerumen further into the canal

How should you instill the prescribed eardrops?

By holding the dropper 1 cm above the ear canal

Why should you ask the patient to remain in a side-lying position for a few minutes?

To help the eardrops absorb properly

What is the primary reason for checking the patient's medical history, history of allergies, and medication history?

To identify any potential medication interactions or allergies

What is the purpose of rewarming eyedrops or eardrops to room temperature before administering to the patient?

To ensure the medication is at the correct temperature for administration

Why is it important to wash away any drainage or crusting along the eyelid margins or inner canthus before instilling eye medications?

To prevent the spread of infection

What is the third check for accuracy during the medication administration process?

Comparing the medication label with the MAR or computer printout

Why is it essential to discuss the purpose, action, and possible adverse effects of each medication with the patient?

To allow the patient to ask questions about the medication

Why should the healthcare provider always wipe clean from the inner to outer canthus when removing drainage or crusting from the eyelid?

To prevent the spread of infection to the inner canthus

What is the term for the written direction for the preparation and administration of a drug?

Prescription

What is the term for a substance administered for the diagnosis, treatment, or relief of a symptom or for prevention of disease?

Medication

What is the term for a gelatinous container to hold a drug in powder, liquid, or oil form?

Capsule

What is the term for a liquid powder or foam deposited in a thin layer of the skin by air pressure?

Aerosol spray

What is the term for a semisolid preparation of one or more drugs used for application to the skin and mucous membrane?

Ointment

What is the term for an aqueous solution of sugar often used to disguise unpleasant – tasting drugs?

Syrup

Study Notes

Medication Administration

  • Medication: a substance administered for diagnosis, treatment, or relief of a symptom or prevention of disease.
  • Prescription: a written direction for the preparation and administration of a drug.
  • Official name: the name under which the drug is listed in official publications.
  • Brand (trade) name: the name given by the drug manufacturer.

Types of Medication Preparations

  • Aerosol spray or foam: a liquid powder or foam deposited in a thin layer of the skin by air pressure.
  • Aqueous solution: one or more drugs dissolved in water.
  • Caplet: a solid form, shaped like a capsule, coated and easily swallowed.
  • Capsule: a gelatinous container to hold a drug in powder, liquid, or oil form.
  • Ointment: a semisolid preparation of one or more drugs used for application to the skin and mucous membrane.

Common Abbreviations

  • ac: before meals
  • aq: water
  • bid: twice a day
  • cap: capsule
  • gm: gram
  • gtt: drop
  • hs: at bedtime
  • ID: intradermal
  • IM: intramuscular
  • IV: intravenous
  • Kg: kilogram
  • L: liter
  • mcg: microgram
  • mg: milligram
  • OD: right eye
  • OS: left eye
  • OU: both eyes
  • pc: after meals
  • po: by mouth
  • prn: when needed
  • q: every
  • qh: every hour
  • q2h: every 2 hours
  • q6h: every 6 hours
  • qid: four times a day
  • qod: every other day
  • sc: subcutaneous
  • stat: at once
  • supp: suppository
  • tab: tablet
  • tid: three times a day

Three Checks for Safe Medication Administration

  • First check: read the medication record and remove the medication(s) from the client's drawer; verify the client's name and room number match the medication record; compare the label of the medication against the medication record; and check the expiration date of the medication.
  • Second check: while preparing the medication, look at the medication label and check against the medication record.
  • Third check: recheck the label on the container against the medication record before returning to its storage place or before giving the medication to the client.

Ten "Rights" of Medication Administration

  • Right medication
  • Right dose
  • Right time
  • Right route
  • Right client
  • Right client education
  • Right documentation
  • Right to refuse
  • Remove gloves and perform hand hygiene

Instilling Eye Medications

  • Apply clean gloves.
  • Hold cotton ball or clean tissue in nondominant hand on patient's cheekbone just below lower eyelid.
  • With tissue or cotton resting below lower lid, gently press downward with thumb or forefinger against bony orbit, exposing conjunctival sac.
  • Never press directly against patient's eyeball.
  • Ask patient to look at ceiling.
  • Rest dominant hand on patient's forehead; hold filled medication eyedropper approximately 1 to 2 cm above conjunctival sac.
  • Drop prescribed number of drops into conjunctival sac.
  • If patient blinks or closes eye, causing drops to land on outer lid margins, repeat procedure.
  • Apply gentle pressure to patient's nasolacrimal duct with clean tissue for 30 to 60 seconds over each eye, one at a time.
  • Avoid pressure directly against patient's eyeball.
  • After instilling drops, ask patient to close eyes gently.
  • Holding applicator above lower lid margin, apply thin ribbon of ointment evenly along inner edge of lower eyelid on conjunctiva from inner to outer canthus.
  • Have patient close eye and rub lid lightly in circular motion with cotton ball if not contraindicated.
  • Avoid placing pressure directly against patient's eyeball.
  • If excess medication is on eyelid, gently wipe it from inner to outer canthus.

Instilling Ear Medications

  • Perform hand hygiene.
  • Apply clean gloves (only if drainage is present).
  • Warm medication to room temperature by running warm water over bottle.
  • Position patient on side (if not contraindicated) with ear to be treated facing up, or patient may sit in chair or at bedside.
  • Stabilize patient's head with his or her own hand.
  • Straighten ear canal by pulling pinna up and back (adult or child older than age 3) or down and back (child under age 3).
  • If cerumen or drainage occludes outermost portion of ear canal, wipe out gently with cotton-tipped applicator.
  • Instill prescribed drops holding dropper 1 cm above ear canal.
  • Ask patient to remain in side-lying position for a few minutes.
  • Apply gentle massage or pressure to tragus of ear with finger.
  • If ordered, gently insert portion of cotton ball into outermost part of canal.
  • Remove cotton after 15 minutes.
  • Help patient to comfortable position after drops are absorbed.
  • Dispose of soiled supplies in proper receptacle, remove and dispose of gloves, and perform hand hygiene.

Assessment Before Instilling Eye and Ear Medications

  • Determine whether patient has any symptoms of eye or ear discomfort or visual or hearing impairment.
  • Assess patient's medical history, history of allergies (including latex), and medication history.
  • Assess patient's level of consciousness (LOC) and ability to follow directions.
  • Prepare medications for instillation.
  • Check label of medication against MAR 2 times.
  • Check expiration date on container.
  • Perform hand hygiene and arrange supplies at bedside.
  • Identify patient using two identifiers (i.e., name and birthday or name and account number) according to agency policy.
  • Discuss purpose of each medication, action, and possible adverse effects.
  • Allow patient to ask any questions about the drugs.

Learn about the basics of medication administration, including definitions, types of medication preparations, and more. This quiz covers the fundamentals of medication administration and is prepared by Fedaa Ayasreh.

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