While many pharmacy errors are the result of an overworked or distracted pharmacist who provides the patient with the incorrect drug, there are a certain number of errors made each year due to prescription drugs being mis-labeled or mis-packaged by the drug’s manufacturer. In these cases, it is likely that the pharmacist on duty double-checked the prescription and provided the patient what he or she thought to be the correct medication, but due to a mistake that occurred before the pharmacist ever had control of the medication, the patient was provided with the wrong medication.
Of course, drug manufacturers have a duty to properly package their products, as well as to include all relevant and necessary warnings on the packaging. When a drug leaves the manufacturer’s control with incorrect labeling, there is often little other parties can do to catch and fix the error. There are some circumstances, however, in which such an error will not likely excuse the pharmacist, and these are when the pharmacist has the occasion to see the unpackaged medication or is otherwise made aware of the error.
Not all packaging errors result in the patient being provided the wrong medication entirely. In fact, according to one recent news report, mis-packaged birth control medication resulted in over 100 unplanned pregnancies. According to one news source reporting on the 2011 recall, the order of the pills was reversed in the packaging. This resulted in a much higher chance of pregnancy.
Compounding the problem was the fact that the specific batch of medication at issue also had a barely legible serial number. In all, about 113 women claimed that they unexpectedly became pregnant while on the medication. In a lawsuit filed against the drug’s manufacturer, they are seeking damages for medical expenses, lost wages, pain, suffering, loss of consortium, and child-rearing expenses.
While an unplanned pregnancy is certainly a major concern for women not planning on becoming pregnant, some women take birth control medication because they are not safely able to become pregnant and give birth. In such cases, a pregnancy could be fatal to the mother. It remains to be seen how the lawsuit filed against the drug’s manufacturer will turn out. In the most recent news, a federal court ruled that the 113 women should not be certified as a “class” for a class-action lawsuit because they are seeking different damages depending on whether they gave birth or whether the pregnancy was terminated before birth.
Have You Been Injured by a Mislabeled or Dangerous Drug?
If you or a loved one has recently been injured by a mislabeled or otherwise dangerous drug, you may be entitled to monetary compensation for all that you have been through. Pharmacists as well as drug manufacturers have a duty to their customers and patients, and when that duty is violated they may be held financially liable. Call the Maryland personal injury lawyers at Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC today at 410-654-3600 to set up a free consultation. They have decades of experience bringing all kinds of cases on behalf of injured Marylanders, including those arising from prescription errors.
More Blog Posts:
What to Do if the Pharmacist Gives You the Wrong Medication, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, March 1, 2016.
Hospital Pharmacy Errors More Common Than Most Believe, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, March 22, 2016.