The results of a study to develop a hospital-wide medication review service for patients with enteral tubes to improve patient safety are presented.Summary.
Inappropriate enteral administration of medications can result in occluded tubes, altered clinical response, and an increase in adverse effects. At Saint Barnabas Medical Center, a 600-bed community teaching hospital located in Livingston, New Jersey, a medication review service for patients with an enteral tube was developed. A phased approach was used. In phase 1, a retrospective chart review revealed that 43% of our patients with enteral tubes received at least one medication that should not be crushed. In phase 2, we identified formulary medications that should not be crushed based on guidance from the Institute for Safe Medication Practices. We added a “do not crush” warning to the identified medications in our electronic medication administration record and automated medication dispensing system. In phase 3, we created an automatic substitution list of medications. Phase 4 involved the development of the program in our health information technology platform. An electronic task list alerted pharmacists about patients with enteral tubes who required medication review and potential medication substitutions, as well as patients with newly removed enteral tubes who can be placed back on their original medications. In phase 5, we provided education to prescribers, nurses, and pharmacists.Conclusion.
A hospital-wide medication review service for patients with enteral tubes at our community teaching medical center was developed.