There are five rights commonly associated with medication administration to help improve patient safety.
The five rights of medication administration are:
- Right patient
- Most important of all, do you have the right patient? Verify the patient information. Check the wrist band. Ask the patient to tell you his name and date of birth. If he can't tell you, does he know his physician's name? Is there a family member present to verify identification? Never use the room and bed number as the sole means of identification.
- Right medication
- Check the label on the bottle, bubble pack or other packaging. Also be aware of the generic name of the medication ordered in case of product substituion.
- Right dose
- Make sure that the quantity and strength of the medication matches what was ordered.
- Right time
- Many medications are time sensitive. Be sure to give the medication at the proper time and at the proper interval.
- Right route
- Some medications have various routes that they could be administered, be sure that the medication you have is appropriate for the route it needs to be administered.
Many textbooks and institutions have started including additional rights which vary from book to book or facility to facility. These additional rights most typically include:
- Right technique
- Be sure you are using the correct technique to administer the medication. Typically something intended for intramuscular injection will not achieve the desired effect if given intravenously.
- Right chart information
- In an institutional setting there will typically be a patient chart that you can verify all your information against in order to double-check everything else.
- Right documentation
- Proper documentation of information will help the other health professionals provide better care for the patient when they look over the patient's chart/medication administration record.
- Right attitude
- Patients and their family members will typically be much more compliant and helpful if the medical care givers display an appropriate attitude.