Errors in administering medication can have devastating effects, so to protect people from any accidental harm you should always remember the Six Rights of Administration - they go as follows:
Right Person – People can have very similar, or even the same names. Always make absolutely sure you have the right person.
Right Medicine – Many medicines have similar names so thoroughly check the name on the prescription.
Right Dose – No matter how many times you've done it in the past, always read the directions and measure correctly. Too little and the medicine will be ineffective, too much and the person could become sick.
Right Time – Make sure enough time has passed since their last dose, otherwise you could end up giving them too much. Check to see when the medicine was last administered.
Right Route – Make sure you carefully read how to administer the medication. Getting it wrong can cause harm.
The right to refuse – If a person refuses to take their medication you should NOT force them to do so. Take note of their refusal and any reasons they give. It may be that a different medication can be given which is more suitable.
Take a look at this clip from our Administering Medication in Care course about the rights of administering medication in care!