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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Laurie J. Singel, MSN, RNC (University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio)
Description: This book provides an easy-to-follow, systematic review of mathematics and calculations for safe medication administration. Bright, colorful pictures, clear graphics, and a self-paced learning format make this a valuable tool.
Purpose: The author offers a simplified approach to calculation and administration of medications, because despite the advent of unit-dose systems in most healthcare institutions, nurses are frequently required to calculate medication dosages. Reading this book should adequately prepare the beginning practitioner (or inactive nurse returning to work) to safely administer medications.
Audience: It has been written for current and potential practitioners at any level and would be very helpful for staff review and inservice programs. This textbook could also be used as an effective corrective measure for employees with medication errors in practice.
Features: This book provides a very thorough review of all mathematical skills necessary for accurate medication administration, including the metric system and apothecaries. These concepts are then applied to actual medication orders for real-life experience. Special chapters address critical dosages for pediatrics, critical care, and heparin and insulin orders. This book contains excellent graphics. Actual photographs of drug labels and equipment bring the book alive. Self-paced learning is easily accomplished by the structured layout. All concepts are interrelated. Non-glare, perforated pages with three-hole punches make this a very student friendly text.
Assessment: Compared with other textbooks for medication calculations, I believe this is a superior product. The author has incorporated critical thinking into all medication administration scenarios — a vital component for today's professional nurse. This is a second edition and the changes are justified.. The author has included over 200 new drug labels and illustrations, critical thinking exercise sections on patient education, and special home care considerations. As healthcare providers move from acute care institutions to community-based care, it is essential to teach the beginning practitioner the skills necessary to develop critical thinking and autonomous decision making. The confidence gained by successfully completing a medication administration course is an important part of that new direction.