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Safety Assessment of the Pharmacotherapy Process at the Nurse and Midwife Level – An Observational Study

Authors Witczak I, Uchmanowicz I, Tartaglia R, Rypicz Ł

Received 13 August 2020

Accepted for publication 26 September 2020

Published 4 November 2020 Volume 2020:16 Pages 1057—1065


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Garry Walsh

Izabela Witczak,1 Izabella Uchmanowicz,2 Riccardo Tartaglia,3 Łukasz Rypicz1

1Department of Health Care Economics and Quality, Faculty of Health Sciences, Wroclaw Medical University, Wroclaw, Poland; 2Department of Clinical Nursing, Faculty of Health Sciences, Wroclaw Medical University, Wroclaw, Poland; 3President of the Italian Network for Safety in Health Care, Florence, Italy

Correspondence: Izabella Uchmanowicz
Faculty of Health Sciences, Department of Clinical Nursing, Wroclaw Medical University, Bartla 5, Wroclaw 51-618, Poland
Tel +48 71 784 18 05
Fax +48 71 345 93 24

Purpose: Pharmacological errors are among the most common in the healthcare system. This study aimed to determine the level of safety of the pharmacotherapy process at the stage performed by nurses and midwives by indicating the key risk factors affecting patients’ safety.
Methods: A group of 1276 nurses and 136 midwives in Poland participated in the study. The survey was conducted in the period from May 2019 to August 2019. The original Nursing Risk in Pharmacotherapy (NURIPH) tool was used.
Results: The Cronbach alpha coefficient was 0.832. The low legibility of the medical orders (item 1) was indicated as the highest risk. A mean of 4.50 means that this factor’s significance is assessed between “very significant” and “significant.” The communication between physician, nurse and midwife, time pressure, and work organization were also rated high (Items 2, 3, and 4). The averages for these factors are higher than 4, so their evaluation is more than “significant.”.
Conclusion: Nurses and midwives involved in the pharmacotherapy process are exposed to many ergonomic factors triggering risk. A huge problem is the lack of readability of medical orders, which may be a factor triggering a medical error.

Keywords: patient safety, medication error, NURIPH tool, nurses and midwives, pharmacotherapy, risk management

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