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From The CriticsReviewer: Margaret A. Haroth, MS (Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing)
Description: This second edition workbook, which complements a nursing pharmacology text by the same authors, is a compilation of key points in nursing management in drug therapy. The material is presented in a highly organized, sequential fashion from simple to complex in order to facilitate learning and to enhance problem-solving skills of nursing students.
Purpose: The main purpose is to enhance problem-solving through application of principles of drug therapy in the management of patient care. The authors present factual information followed by patient variables to consider through multiple choice questions, case studies, and essay questions. The objectives of the authors are achieved by focusing on core drug knowledge followed by activities to enhance application of knowledge in clinical nursing practice. The authors challenge the student to consider the complexity of nursing management in drug therapy by developing a multidimensional approach to patient care. The exercises are challenging, and it is time well spent by students who persevere in completing the more difficult activities at the end of each chapter.
Audience: Nursing students in a basic pharmacology course are the main audience for this workbook. The authors are well prepared to address this audience through their knowledge of pharmacology and drug therapy in nursing as well as their experience in nursing education.
Features: The book presents key points regarding drug therapy according to systems and major drug classifications as well core information on pharmacotherapeutics, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacodynamics. A chapter on patient variables throughout the life span prepares the student for some of the written activities at the end of each chapter. These include puzzles, multiple choice questions, case studies, and essay questions which challenge one's critical thinking skills. An answer key is included for each chapter. The best parts of the book are "the top 10 things to know" about the subject matter for each chapter's topic, the case studies, and the answer key. The 10 key points in each chapter allow the student to quickly review material when completing the multiple choice questions, true/false statements, matching statements, and puzzles after reading the chapter. These simple activities are followed by more complex exercises which include case studies and critical thinking questions for essays. These activities challenge the student to develop the necessary skills for managing drug therapy, such as checking relevant lab work before giving certain medications or checking the drug profile for possible interactions. The answer key is also presented clearly with detailed explanations of correct multiple choice questions, case study answers, and exercises in critical thinking. Some of the critical thinking questions are rather complex for the beginning nursing student; however, in the introduction, the authors encourage the student to persevere in pursuit of knowledge and skills associated with drug therapy in patient care.
Assessment: This is an excellent workbook and one that is worthy of repeated revisions to provide up-to-date information in a complex, ever changing subject. Although this workbook complements the second edition of the textbook by the same authors, it does not require use of the textbook for completion of the exercises, unlike many nursing pharmacology references.