In our Legal Tips video series, we cover the topic of Pharmacy Negligence. Many people rely on prescriptions and over-the-counter medication when facing temporary ailments or chronic problems, and they trust that their pharmacist will correctly dispense the appropriate prescription. However,mistakes can unfortunately occur. Pharmacy Negligence (or pharmacy malpractice) occurs when errors are involved in the prescription process due to a variety of reasons. These errors can happen at any stage of the process and can have harmful effects that lead to a need for personal injury legal action. Following we look at some of the primary examples of pharmacy negligence and how it can cause injury or death.
Wrong Medication/ Dosage Amount
Dispensing the wrong medication or the wrong dosage amount is often the culprit in a pharmacy negligence case. Large pharmacies have access to complete medication records dispensed to each individual, which puts the pharmacist in a position to recognize and understand when a doctor makes a mistake regarding type of medication or dosage amount. As a healthcare professional, it is part of the pharmacistâ€™s responsibility to understand the prescription order and how to proceed with the filling to ensure that the patient receives the correct medication and dosage amount for their ailment. When questions are involved, it is the pharmacistâ€™s responsibility to consult with the doctor for verification.
Another type of pharmacy negligence is when a prescription has the wrong set of instructions that may affect dosage amount, or may misrepresent the medication inside the bottle entirely. This occurs when a pharmacist or technician writes the wrong instructions for the right medication, or the right instructions for a wrong medication. Many people often do not realize the mistake of wrong instructions until harmful effects present themselves. If problems relating to an overdose or underdose start occurring, or side effects from taking the wrong medication occur, pursuing an injury claim is in order.
Pharmacists are trained to know how medications will interact with other medications or different allergies that may exist. When a large pharmacy company has complete access to prescription records, the pharmacist is in a position to recognize if a medication or dosage might negatively interact with another prescription written by another doctor. Negligence occurs when a pharmacist fails to account for harmful drug interactions or known allergies.
Pharmacy negligence can cause significant damages from medical costs, to physical pain, mental anguish, or physical impairment to even wrongful death.
To avoid becoming a victim of pharmacist malpractice, keep these tips in mind during your next visit to the pharmacy.
– When your doctor writes you a new prescription, be sure to mention any other medications that you are taking, both prescription and over-the-counter.
– Ask your doctor how often a prescription should be taken and how it should be appropriately stored.
– Ask your pharmacist more about the prescription, especially if you notice that the name on the label is different from what your doctor told you.
– After you are handed your new prescription, ask the pharmacist the name of the prescription, the dosage amount and the purpose of it for further verification.
If you or someone you know has been a victim of pharmacy negligence, contact Erney Law today. For more information, visit our pharmacy negligence video from our legal tips series.