About Your Hospital Stay

All medications you take while in the hospital are prescribed by your physician, dispensed by the hospital pharmacy and administered by a nurse. You are not permitted to administer your own medication. You also will not be permitted to keep personal medication at your bedside (with certain exceptions, such as inhalers, and only with your physician's approval).

Know Your Meds

Your health care professionals will explain the purpose and possible side effects of all medications prescribed for you. If you have questions about your medication, our pharmacists are available to speak with you. Please ask your nurse to contact your pharmacist.

For your information and safety, please be sure you understand the medications your physician is prescribing for you and why they are being prescribed. Use this checklist to get the information you need from your doctor or nurse:

  • What is the name of the medicine?
  • Is there a generic name that I have been prescribed?
  • Why am I taking this medicine?
  • What dose will I be taking?
  • How often, and for how long?
  • What are the possible side effects?
  • Can I take this medicine while taking my other medications or dietary supplements?
  • Are there any foods, drinks or activities I should avoid while taking this medicine?

Preventing Medication Errors

By taking part in your own care, you can help the members of your health care team avoid medication errors. Here's how:

  • Be sure your physician(s) and nurses know what medications you have been taking, including prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, herbal and vitamin supplements, natural remedies and recreational drugs.
  • Be sure all of your doctors know of any allergies you may have to medications, anesthesia, foods, latex products, etc.
  • When you are brought medications or IV fluids, ask your health care provider to check that you are the patient who is supposed to receive the medications. Show them your ID bracelet to double-check.