Every year, 30 million cases of pharmacy errors occur in outpatient pharmacies in the U.S., according to the National Patient Safety Foundation. Some errors are slight, but some mistakes lead to significant injury or death.
Pharmacists are responsible for furnishing the correct medication in accordance with doctors’ prescriptions. Prescriptions are vital to patients’ healthcare, and pharmacy mistakes can result in serious harm or even death.
Pharmacist errors usually involve one or both of the following issues:
- Incorrect medication
- Incorrect dosage
If you or a loved one has been injured or lost life as a result of a pharmacy error, you may be eligible for compensation. Contact Childers, Schlueter & Smith for a free consultation to learn more about your legal rights and options.
When pharmacists dispense the wrong medication, a variety of health risks can result, including:
- Failure to treat the patient’s condition
- Onset of a condition caused by the wrong medicine
- Allergic reaction
- Dangerous interaction with other medicines
Even a dosage difference of a few milligrams may harm a patient, depending on the drug. Painkiller overdose, for instance, is often fatal. Dosage mistakes can result from:
- Incorrect amount of a drug being dispensed
- Incorrect dosage instructions, such as advice to take a drug “as needed” when in fact it requires doses at specific times
Potential Pharmacy Mistakes
There are many reasons pharmacists or pharmacist techs make errors, but none excuse the harm you may suffer as a result. If your pharmacist issued an incorrect prescription, the wrong dosage or dose usage instructions, you may be entitled to compensation. Documenting the possible reason for error may aid in our investigation into your claim. Possible causes of error include:
- Accidental error
- Misreading the prescription
- Improperly entering prescription into the computer, or not entering it at all
- Confusing similar drug names
- Choosing the wrong medicine
- Stocking the pharmacy or hospital shelves or drawers incorrectly
- Pharmacist not double-checking the work of a pharmacy technicians
- Incorrectly advising patients on drug usage – either verbally or on the instruction label
- Failing to offer legally mandated face-to-face counseling with the pharmacist for patients with new prescriptions
- Not checking the patient’s history for possible drug interactions
- Poorly managing the pharmacy, resulting in long shifts without breaks or under-qualified staff
- Keeping out-of-date patient information leaflets
- Poorly maintained pharmacy mixing machines
- Company incentives for maximizing speed or customer volume that encourage rushing and other dangerous behaviors
Pharmacist Should Pay for Negligence
Pharmacists receive extensive schooling to ensure they are capable of upholding the required standards of care. Precision is a key part of pharmacists’ training. When pharmacists makes mistakes – either through inattention, negligence or oversight – they must be held accountable for the harm the errors cause.
Patients should be able to trust that pharmacists will dispense their prescriptions exactly as doctors order. If a doctor writes a prescription is unclear, it is the pharmacist’s duty to contact the physician who wrote it and ensure the correct administration of the drug.
If you have suffered harm from a pharmacy error, you may be entitled to compensation. The experienced personal injury attorneys of Childers, Schlueter & Smith can file a malpractice suit on your behalf against your pharmacy and/or pharmacist and work tirelessly to achieve the maximum compensation for you.
If you have been injured by pharmacy error, we are determined to obtain justice on your behalf. Contact Childers, Schlueter & Smith today to begin the process of filing your claim.