There’s no doubt a critically ill patient can be prescribed a ton of medicines. And in Angela’s case, she is taking close to a dozen. But, before you freak… she doesn’t take them all at the same time. Some are reserved for symptoms that have long passed, like nausea. And tracking the what and when of these can be daunting, especially when it’s compounded by other things in the caregiving universe.
Fortunately, Ang is still on the ball and able to call me out on any inconsistencies. This happened twice recently and served as a wakeup call. I felt like an idiot. I could no longer rely on her handwritten chart that’s been altered by me over time. I really liked seeing her handwriting no matter how often we had revised this little chart. But, it was no way to keep things straight. She was never in any danger thankfully. I just needed to tighten up the system I used to track everything.
Stark Reality of Caregiver Medication Administration Errors
Several studies have been done investigating the incidences of errors in caregiver medication administration. And the results aren’t good. “Home medication administration errors made by caregivers are similar errors to those made by professionals in other contexts (1)”
My Solution: A Google Docs Medicine Chart Template
In the end, I decided to revise the chart and put it into a format I could use and that fit into a sheet protector. In this way, I wouldn’t have to worry about it’s condition and could easily revise it as needed. A preview of the Medicine Chart I created for me to help with Angela’s medicines is below. Pick up your Google Docs copy here or, a PDF here