After the prescription is labeled, check the ingredients again by some systematic method to ensure accuracy.
As an added precaution and to aid expeditious identification of drugs, in case of undesirable effects, note the manufacturer and the lot number of the proprietary drug dispensed on the prescription. This procedure does not apply when the medication consists of a mixture of several ingredients. The initials or the code of the person filling the prescription must be on the prescription blank.
Prescriptions that have been filled must be maintained in one of several separate files:
2. Alcohol (alcoholic beverages are no longer dispensed)These prescriptions are numbered consecutively, preceded by the letter A, and filed separately.
3. Schedule 111 (non-narcotic), IV, and V drugsThese prescriptions are numbered in the same manner as and are part of the general files; however, they are maintained separately.
4. General files-All other prescriptions are numbered consecutively and filed together.
Make sure that all prescriptions are written in black or blue-black ink or indelible pencil, or typewritten, and are kept on file for at least 2 years after the date of issue.
Contrary to common belief, errors in prescription filling are seldom due to gross negligence or ignorance of technical aspects. The vast majority of errors are due to human mistakes that could be avoided. The following are some major causes of error, and you should pay particular attention to them.
1. Giving the prescription to the wrong person. Occasionally, especially during rush hours, prescriptions go to the wrong person, either through misunderstanding or inattention. Make absolutely sure that you have the right patient, both when you receive the prescription and when you dispense the finished product.
2. Switching labels. Often when a patient has more than one prescription, or when the compounder is filling several prescriptions at a time, the label of one prescription is inadvertently fastened to the container of another, with consequent conflict of directions. It is absolutely imperative that the right label go with the right medication.
3. Overconfidence. Statistics show that the majority of mistakes are made by the experts those who have been doing things for so long they have become overconfident and have begun to take shortcuts. Whenever you feel that you have become so good at filling prescriptions that you no longer need to double-check your work, stop and thinkyou may be inviting disaster.
4. Dishonesty or cheating. A person who becomes so involved in tampering with drugs and their quantities to make up for those pilfered or misappropriated cannot possibly avoid tragic mistakes. Personnel with low integrity, disciplinary problems, and moral shortcomings should not be allowed to work in the pharmacy.
5. Failure to double-check. All too often the belated excuse for error is I thought it was thus and so or I didnt want to bother the prescriber with this or, worse still, I didnt want the prescriber to think I was stupid for asking. When in doubt, always double-check and ask. Failing to do so can be tragic.
Whether on independent duty, on duty in a dispensary, or at a major medical center, there exists a critical need for the hospital corpsman to perform the basic functions necessary to transcribe information from a patients health record onto an eyewear prescription