What Are Medication Errors, And How Do They Happen?

A medical malpractice claim can be based on a number of different actions, but at the end of the day, it all depends on whether the medical provider’s conduct was negligent. If you were prescribed or given the wrong medicine, you might be questioning whether you have the right to file a medical malpractice claim. 

When a medical professional hands you a prescription, you trust that the mentioned medications will give you the desired effect. However, that does not always happen. If you or your loved one were harmed due to medication errors, you might have a medical malpractice claim. Speak to Syracuse Medical Malpractice lawyers today.

What are the common types of prescription drug errors?

There are various types of prescription drug errors, and some of the common types include the following: 

  • Prescribing the wrong medicine or the wrong dosage. More or less dosage can create health issues.
  • Putting the wrong label on a medication bottle.
  • Even after being aware of the fact that they are allergic, prescribing a medication that contains an ingredient that the patient is allergic to.
  • Prescribing a medication that reacts negatively when taken with the other prescribed medicines.
  • Not informing the patient about the side effects of the medication. 

Who is responsible for medication errors?

Anyone involved in designing, making, prescribing, or administering can potentially be held responsible for a medication error. Who is liable depends on exactly when the error took place. In some circumstances, pharmaceutical companies, pharmacists, physicians, nurses, and hospitals may also be responsible. 

Winning a medical malpractice claim is not easy. You need to show that you were owed a duty of care by the medical professional and that you had an official doctor-patient relationship. Next, you must show that the doctor, nurse, or other professional failed to adhere to the medical standard of care, resulting in your injuries and damages. 

Why do medication errors occur?

Unsurprisingly, many nurses and healthcare providers are often overworked and tired. It is easy for them to make a mistake when dealing with so many people. Therefore, some common reasons why medication errors occur include the following: 

  • Staff being unfamiliar with the medication
  • Poor handwriting
  • Inadequate information about the patient
  • Miscommunication
  • Poor record keeping
  • Alcohol or drug dependence of healthcare providers
  • Overworked medical providers
  • Lack of warnings
  • Inadequate perception of risk

Medication errors are much more than taking the wrong medicine just once. They can lead to devastating consequences. Speak to an attorney today. 

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