DOs and DON’Ts of A Dispensing Error

Pharmacy Dispensing Error

Should I acknowledge my mistake? Should I report my error? Will the company throw me under the bus? My colleagues will think am not capable to be a pharmacist. Will I be called for disciplinary action?

Pharmacists struck off the GPhC register due to dishonest acts (such as not reporting an error), it is easy to assume when an error occurs; the questions above runs through the minds of such pharmacists.
Pharmacists are trained to pay attention to details, to stay focus however during a split second it is possible to make and error. But what truly matters is our actions after a mistake has occurred. Pharmacists should follow standard operating procedures and ensure necessary steps are set in place to stop error reoccurrence?

DOs and DON’Ts

Do Apologise:
Do apologise even if it is not your fault. It can make a massive difference to the patient. Knowing the pharmacist is personally handling the situation and will resolve it as soon as possible. 

Do Acknowledge:
It can be tempting to see a mistake and be blind to it. “Maybe if I look away, it will just disappear”. That is not and will never be the right thing to do.

Do Investigate and Report:
Investigating is highly encouraged. It allows you to have a clear picture of the incidence. Gather all the relevant information before filling the error log. 

Do Seek for Help:
If in doubt ask an experienced pharmacist for help. Because you asked for help doesn’t mean you are incapable of being a pharmacist. 

Do Learn: 
Reporting an error is not about being named and shamed. It should be there for everyone to learn from it.

Don’t Lie:

Don’t Temper with Evidence:
During a CD balance a pharmacist notice methadone in the cupboard is more than the recorded figure in the register. Instead of acknowledging the error and investigate, the pharmacist decided to tip the excess methadone down the sink. Leave a comment below with your thoughts. 

Don’t be Afraid:
Do not be put off by a mistake. An error should not a
ffect your known and established capabilities. Learn and Grow. 

Thank you for reading the DOs and DON’Ts of A Dispensing Error

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