Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Janice M. Long


Effectiveness of a Medication Administration Protocol on Medication Errors and Inpatient Falls


Avril Dolly

MS, University of the West Indies, 2010

BS, University of the West Indies, 2009

Project Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of

Doctor of Nursing Practice

Walden University

November 2017

Adverse events such as medication errors and inpatient falls have been reported as the leading cause of safety incidences at the acute care facility in Trinidad and Tobago where this project was conducted. These mishaps aroused concerns about patient safety and led to a quality improvement (QI) initiative at the hospital. The QI project included establishing an evidence-based medication administration protocol in one unit in the hospital and a plan to examine the medication errors and the patient fall rates at the site. While multiple factors were noted to affect the risk for patient falls, this project was recognized as a starting point for a health system QI initiative that was to continue beyond the student's project. The purpose of this project was to evaluate the effectiveness of the medication administration protocol and determine if a corresponding change in the hospital patient fall rates occurred. An outcome impact evaluation model was used to examine both the medication error rate and the patient fall rates 3 months prior to and 3 months after implementation of the QI initiative. Results of a 2-tailed paired t-test show significant reductions in medication errors (p = .039) and patient fall rates (p = .033). While the results are statistically significant, the findings must be interpreted cautiously in view of the variables that could not be considered in this QI initiative. The findings of this project offer a beginning to a much-needed surveillance of patient fall rates and an ongoing promotion of safety through medication administration protocol used. The project offers an opportunity to promote positive social change by raising awareness of the need for a culture of patient safety.

Included in

Nursing Commons