Pharmacy errors are unfortunately far more common that you may think. If you have fallen victim, here is what you should know.
Pharmacists have a very serious responsibility towards patients, just like medical practitioners have. Pharmacists are the ones who give out medications prescribed by doctors. They need to understand the composition of each medicine, correct combinations, be aware of any contraindications, and should check all these before they hand out the medications to patients.
Negligence on part of pharmacists is unfortunately far more common than you may think, and lead to a number of adverse drug events every year. All such cases can be completely prevented with a little care and vigilance on part of the pharmacists while handing out the medications. Our Chicago medical malpractice lawyer discusses pharmacy error-related injuries in detail.
Research and studies have shown that every year about 1.5 million adverse drug events place. These preventable accidents generally take place when pharmacists make errors and hand out incorrect medications or incorrect dosage to patients.
According to the The National Coordinating Council for Medication Error Reporting and Prevention (NCCMERP) a medication error is defined as –
‘any preventable event that may cause or lead to inappropriate medication use or patient harm while the medication is in the control of the health care professional, patient, or consumer. Such events may be related to professional practice, health care products, procedures, and systems, including prescribing; order communication; product labeling, packaging, and nomenclature; compounding; dispensing; distribution; administration; education; monitoring; and use.’
According to CDC statistics, about 82 percent of Americans take at least one prescription medication, and about 29 percent take five or more than five. This indicates that a large number of prescription medication users are at a high risk if these medications are not prescribed in correct doses, if they are incorrectly prescribed without necessary instructions, or if not prescribed at all.
Common Pharmacy Errors
According to the FDA, about 1.3 million users are injured due to medication errors. Even minute changes in prescription can lead to injury or even death. Some common prescription errors caused by pharmacists include –
- Failure to warn prescription users of potentially hazardous drug side-effects.
- Giving wrong medication
- Medication labeling errors
- Incorrect medication dosage
- Dispensing medications with known adverse reactions
- Failure to give proper instructions about medication use
A hospital in Boston conducted a survey wherein 140,755 prescription doses were found erroneous. Out of these, 5,075 contained errors, while about 79 percent of errors were found only after verification. 23.5 percent of those that were not caught were potentially known to cause adverse reactions, 28 percent of which were severe in nature.
Legal Help in Chicago for Pharmacy Errors
Pharmaceutical errors and their resultant injuries are preventable. Considering the fact that incorrect drug usage can lead to severe complications, and can even be fatal, patients and their families should also be cautious and check the prescriptions given by a pharmacists. They should be proactive and ask questions related to use and effects of the prescribed medication, the proper way to take those prescriptions and any other contraindications they need to be aware of. If you have been injured due to a pharmacy error in Illinois, give Willens Law Offices a call at (312) 957-4166. We can evaluate your claim for free, inform you of your legal rights, and begin helping you get on the road to compensation