4.7. Summary


The MAR and the Medication Label


  • The QMAP uses the MAR every time when preparing and administering medications
  • Do Not Ever Give Medications From Memory!!!
  • Compare the medication label to the MAR three times to make sure the medication is labeled for this client and that it is the right medication, right dose, right route and the right time
  • The first check happens when removing the medication container from where it is stored;
  • The second check happens just before or after opening the medication and preparing it for the client;
  • The third check happens after pouring the medication and before the medication is given to the client;
  • The MAR is designed to promote safe and accurate medication administration;
  • Information on the MAR must be clearly written and kept updated;
  • The information on the MAR and the medication label should match unless there has been a change in directions
  • The QMAP must be familiar with the adult care home’s policy on direction changes;
  • A medication label should only be changed or altered by the dispensing practitioner Timing of Medication Administration;
  • Important to understand timing in relation to administering medications, i.e., insulin and medications ordered to be administered on an empty stomach or in relation to meals;
  • Timing of medications in relation to meals;
  • Before meals – medication generally administered within 30 minutes prior to the resident eating meals;
  • With meals – medication generally administered when the resident is eating meals or right after finishing meals;
  • After meals – medication administered after the resident has finished eating meals up to 30 minutes afterward



  • Clients in the facility during the medication pass should receive their medications within a window of time one hour prior to and one hour after the scheduled administration time on the MAR, except in the case of medications prescribed for administration in relation to meals or medications such as insulin;
  • If unsure about giving a medication because it is outside the designated time frame;
  • Contact a supervisor or a health care professional regarding the administration of the client’s medications or to determine if prescribing practitioner should be contacted;
  • The medication should not be omitted without contacting a supervisor or a health care professional or prescribing practitioner.


Documentation of Medication Administration


  • The MAR has space where the QMAP is to initial that a dose is given under the correct day and time;
  • The MAR is signed or initialed immediately after the medications are administered and prior to the administration of the next client’s medications;
  • Sign or document on the MAR only after observing the client take the medications;
  • Pre-charting is not permitted and this includes signing the MAR any time prior to the

medications being administered;

  • Document an equivalent signature to correspond with the initials used on the MAR;
  • Do not erase or cover errors. If an error is made in the documentation on the MAR, follow the facility’s policy to correctly document medication errors.


Documentation of PRN Medications


  • Include the amount administered, the time of administration and the reason for


  • The reason a PRN medication is to be administered is to be indicated in the order

Document effectiveness of the medication when determined;

  • A different employee, depending on the time of administration and shift schedules may.


MAR example.