Why? When you're in the hospital, you'll probably have a Conga line of staffers giving you strange pills and IV meds round the clock, and you'll be one of 25 people they're going past as they dispense their goods. Medication orders change minute by minute, patients constantly change, and staffers come and go with each shift change (a particularly dangerous time for mistakes).
Furthermore, these hospital staffers are often sleep deprived. You've seen enough television shows and heard enough horror stories to know that hospital doctors and nurses routinely work more hours without a break than air-conditioners in Texas during August.
Long shifts are directly connected to mistakes: Research has found that nurses who work longer than 12-hour shifts or more than 40 hours a week are three times more likely to make medical errors. More than half of these errors involved medication.
Now that you're aware of this great danger, make sure you take steps to prevent a medication error when you're in the hospital.
Find out more about this book:YOU: The Smart Patient: An Insider's Handbook for Getting the Best Treatment