Cases of overdose resulting from administering chemotherapy are very common. There are numerous factors that contribute to this problem. For example, some medical staff act out of negligence. Secondly, there are no proper systems put to observe cumulative doses. Furthermore, passive personnel fail to take responsibility for their action. As a student, I have a mandate to play my role effectively in this process. The hospital policy acts as a strategy that defines how and who should give the patient the drug. The following paper is a presentation on the findings of my role in observing a cumulative dosage.
The problem of chemotherapy overdose has become very rampant in most hospital settings. There are many patients who have died as a result of this erroneous drug administration. However, it is the role of every medical professional to ensure proper cumulative dose administration. The following paper discusses findings on my role in monitoring cumulative dose.
In the current hospital setting, the cumulative dose is usually documented in the patient care chart. This chart is a tabulation of the prescribed chemotherapy dosage. It highlights the date and the quantity of collective dosage. Every nurse or doctor should tabulate and sign against the entry. I recognize that as a student under practice, I am a passive administrator of the drug. Therefore, I must put in strict measures at all times. I work under a senior nurse who directs my steps. However, I verify every calculation with the doctor’s prescription. I also adhere to the departmental requirement of tabulating the patient care chart. In an instance where the maximum dose reaches, I consult the attending physician on the way forward.
My hospital has a policy that addresses monitoring and documentation of cumulative doses of chemotherapy. The policy acknowledges the five rights of medication administration. The guiding principle requires that only the registered medical physicians and nurses should administer, monitor and document every cumulative dosage a patient receives. It further warns that the physicians are bound to bear the burden of any form of negligence that occurs.
However, I think my facility does not have enough safeguards to prevent a lethal chemotherapy overdose. For instance, most supervisory physicians do not verify the cumulative dosage record. They just sign the charts. Improvement in this area is possible through performing routine internal audit. Moreover, the hospital should also introduce a computer program that signals the rate of discharge of drugs from the pharmacy. I have seen this system in big hospitals. It helps track abnormal drug release. Every professional must take personal responsibility towards alleviating chemotherapy overdose in hospitals.
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