We are presently approaching JCAHO survey. And this issue came up:
As per our policy and procedure protocol for visceral abdominal studies, we (the techs) routinely give out patients an 80-mg tablet of Simethicone prior to performing such studies (so as to reduce the amount of gas). Concerned about any possible legal issues about us administering this "medication" to patients, our Lab Coordinator (Seema Leos) asked our hospital administrators about any legal consequences this practice would ensue. To our surprise they had many questions:
1) Is this common practice in our field? Our answer: YES
2) Are there any adverse reactions that the patient should be informed of? Our answer: None per our pharmacy dept.
3) Is there any inservicing/ training done to determine this practice (how/ who/ when)? Our answer: none that we know of. DO ANY OF YOU OUT THERE KNOW OF ANY SUCH TRAINING?
4) Is this practice part of the job description of a "registered vascular tech?" Our answer: not necessarily. IS IT INCLUDED IN ANY OF YOUR RVT JOB DESCRIPTIONS? We called ICAVL and ARDMS and SVT and they did not have any pertinent information.
5) Should registered nurses be administering the "drug?" Our answer: we're not sure
6) Is a physician order written for the drug? Our answer: we're not sure
We would greatly appreciate feedback from all of you guys out there. Thanks in advance.