Psychiatric patient given wrong medication due to misspelling

Inspection of Owencurra centre in Cork, found a ‘serious medication error’

A resident of a Co Cork psychiatric centre was given the wrong medication for a period of time as their name was misspelt on a prescription record, inspectors from the Mental Health Commission have found.

A resident of a Co Cork psychiatric centre was given the wrong medication for a period of time as their name was misspelt on a prescription record, inspectors from the Mental Health Commission have found.

 

A resident of a Co Cork psychiatric centre was given the wrong medication for a period of time as their name was misspelt on a prescription record, inspectors from the Mental Health Commission have found.

The watchdog said the mistake resulted in a “serious medication error” at the Owencurra Centre, a 29-bed residential mental health facility in Midleton.

An inspection report was critical of the fact “staff had not identified this error,” which came to light when inspectors reviewed medication records.

Four residents in the centre required speech and language therapy, but were not being provided with the service, which pointed towards staffing shortcomings, the report said.

The inspectors also found some healthcare workers at the centre did not have up-to-date mandatory training in life support, fire-safety and violence management.

Inspectors were also critical of facilities at the child and adolescent mental health (Camhs) in-patient unit at Merlin Park University Hospital, Co Galway.

The report, published on Thursday, said the physical layout of the 20-bed unit was not fit for purpose, with only one of the three beds in its special care room available at a given time due to space constraints.

From one part of the centre the seclusion room could only be accessed by bringing young patients through a courtyard, which posed safety risks for staff transferring the distressed patient.

An inspection of two acute adult psychiatric units in St Loman’s Hospital, Delvin Road, Co Westmeath, found that in one case a child had been admitted in the last year due to the shortage of available specific child and adolescent beds.

The report said age appropriate facilities were not available in the centre for the young patient, and “there was no access to age-appropriate advocacy services”, the inspectors said.

The 44-bed mental health units were “not in a good state of repair”, the report found. There was graffiti in several rooms and corridors, windows in the units were dirty, and the roof of the dining area in one unit at the hospital leaked during heavy rain.

Dr Susan Finnerty, head of inspections at the Mental Health Commission, said “common themes” of non-compliance with standards cropped up across the recent reports.

These recurring problems included issues with mental health facilities’ premises, staffing, and issues with patients’ care plans, she added.