Medication & Prescription Errors

Modified on 2009/10/14 21:32 by admin
Medication errors committed by doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals are a major problem and the source of many lawsuits. Medication error causes include prescribing the wrong type of drug, ordering an improper dose, giving a patient a drug that he or she is allergic to, or combining medications that are incompatible. These mistakes can lead to deadly consequences.

Studies indicate that 57% of medication errors result in "adverse outcomes" (death or serious illness). While the majority of medication errors are dosing related, prescribing the wrong type of drug, or one that the patient is allergic to, are both common.

On average, medication errors, also known as "adverse drug events," increase patient hospital stays by 2 - 5 days and increase medical bills by nearly $6,000 per person. While these inconveniences and cost increases are a source of concern, the possibility that medication errors can result in otherwise avoidable fatalities and serious injuries is alarming.

Statistics reveal that the average doctor commits four medication errors for every 1,000 prescriptions written. Some typical medication mistakes include failing to adjust dosages due to a decline in the patient's kidney or liver function, failing to inquire about the patient's history of drug allergies, transcribing the wrong drug name on the prescription pad, and calculating the wrong dose for the patient's physical and medical condition.

Most medication errors occur because doctors simply fail to educate themselves about the proper use of modern prescription drugs. Don't be a victim of a doctor's ignorance. If you have experienced serious health problems because of a doctor's negligence, it may be important to contact an attorney who can help you protect your legal rights. Please keep in mind that there may be time limits within which you must commence suit.

See Also

  1. Other Medical Errors
  2. Allergies: Overview
  3. Anaphylactic Shock: Overview
  4. Kidney Failure
  5. Liver Problems
  6. Overdose: Overview
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