What do I need to learn in order to progress through my course? How do I achieve the best possible patient-care?

Professional Skills for Nurses answers both of these questions and supports the development of key nursing skills underpinned by theory. Designed specifically to meet the needs of nursing students in the initial stages of training, the book focuses on the essential knowledge and skills needed for effective patient-care while at the same time helping students to achieve the NMC outcomes required for entry into branch programs.

Each chapter focuses on a key aspect of nursing care backed up with practical tips, examples drawn from all branches of nursing, and a range of study activities to help you reflect on your learning and get the most from practice placements.

Key themes in healthcare such as ethics, evidence-based practice and health promotion are discussed throughout the book, highlighting how these relate to everyday nursing practice.

Focusing on the core skills covered in the initial stages of training, Professional Skills in Nursing is the ideal introduction for students during the Common Foundation Program.

Administration of Medicines

Administration of medicines

Learning Outcomes

This chapter is designed to help you:

  • understand the guidelines and legislation pertaining to the administration of medicines
  • be aware of potential errors in the administration of medicines
  • be aware of issues concerning drug calculations
  • understand the principles of drug administration and acquire knowledge of the main routes used
  • understand the nurse's role and professional responsibilities.


Drug administration is a major part of the nurse's role. The Audit Commission (2001) estimates that 40 per cent of nurses' time is spent dealing with medication. Doing so safely is of the utmost importance, as failure to administer medication to patients correctly can have dire consequences ranging from an allergic reaction to patient death. This chapter will examine the law and guidelines regarding ...

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