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Medication Review and Transitions of Care: A Case Report of a Decade-Old Medication Error

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A 69-year-old Caucasian male with a 25-year history of paranoid schizophrenia was brought to the emergency department because of violence toward the staff in his nursing facility. He was diagnosed with a urinary tract infection and was admitted to the behavioral health unit for medication stabilization. History included a five-year state psychiatric hospital admission and nursing facility placement. Because of poor cognitive function, the patient was unable to corroborate medication history, so the pharmacy student on rotation performed an in-depth chart review. The review revealed a transcription error in 2003 deleting amantadine 100 mg twice daily and adding amiodarone 100 mg twice daily. Subsequent hospitalization resulted in another transcription error increasing the amiodarone to 200 mg twice daily. All electrocardiograms conducted were negative for atrial fibrillation. Once detected, the consulted cardiologist discontinued the amiodarone, and the primary care provider was notified via letter and discharge papers. An admission four months later revealed that the nursing facility restarted the amiodarone. Amiodarone was discontinued and the facility was again notified. This case reviews how a 10-year-old medication error went undetected in the electronic medical records through numerous medication reconciliations, but was uncovered when a single comprehensive medication review was conducted.
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Keywords: BEHAVIORAL HEALTH; LONG-TERM CARE; MEDICATION ERROR; NURSING FACILITY; TRANSCRIPTION ERROR; TRANSITIONS-OF-CARE; VULNERABLE POPULATIONS

Document Type: Case Report

Affiliations: Shenandoah, University Bernard J. Dunn School of Pharmacy, 1775 north, Sector Court, Winchester, VA 22601, USA

Publication date: 01 October 2017

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  • The Consultant Pharmacist® is the official peer-reviewed journal of the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists. It is dedicated exclusively to the medication needs of the elderly in all settings, including adult day care, ambulatory care, assisted living, community, hospice, and nursing facilities. This award-winning journal is a member benefit of ASCP. Individuals who are not members and wish to receive The Consultant Pharmacist® will want to consider joining ASCP.
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