As is the case with most professions, becoming a pharmacist involves not only getting an education but also obtaining the necessary hands-on experience. Of course, as medical professionals, pharmacists are responsible for the safety of their patients, and any Maryland pharmacy error made by a trainee can have potentially drastic consequences for a patient’s health. Thus, normally, pharmacists in training are closely supervised to ensure that any mistakes they make are caught and fixed before the prescription is passed on to the patient. However, providing this level of supervision is costly to pharmacists, and too often efficiency is favored over safety.
In a recent article discussing the high frequency of pharmacy errors and potential ways to cut back on the number of errors, it was suggested that pharmacists may make fewer mistakes once they are certified to work on their own if they are allowed to make mistakes in training. The proposition is not a surprising one, since it has often been said that “practice makes perfect.” However, in the context of the medical field, patients rightfully expect “perfect” performance when it comes to filling their prescriptions.
The article discusses one pharmacist’s experiences in training and proposes a method to ensure that pharmacists in training are able to make the mistakes they need to make and learn from them. For example, the pharmacist explained that he would have to fill 1,000 prescriptions in a row without an error before he could move on to his next exercise. If he made a single error anywhere along the way, he would start back at zero. He explained the frustrating in reaching 200 prescriptions several times, only to make a minor error.
The article also mentions the value of highlighting – rather than covering up – common errors. By discussing the most common errors, pharmacists are able to anticipate dangerous situations in which an error is likely and take extra precautions in these situations. Again, however, openly discussing errors is not common in the pharmacy industry for fear of admitting legal liability or facing negative career consequences.
Maryland Pharmacy Errors
In Maryland, pharmacists are responsible to accurately fill all patients’ prescriptions. When an error is made, and that error results in an injury to a patient, the patient may pursue a claim for compensation against the pharmacy where the error occurred. While these cases seem straightforward, in many cases, expert medical or scientific witnesses are needed to establish certain elements of the claim. Thus, it is important for potential pharmacy error plaintiffs to discuss their case with a dedicated Maryland personal injury attorney early in the process.
Have You Been a Victim of a Pharmacy Error?
If you or a loved one has recently been a victim of a Maryland pharmacy error, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. The dedicated Maryland personal injury attorneys at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC have extensive experience assisting Maryland pharmacy error victims and their families with pursuing the compensation they need and deserve. Call 410-654-3600 to schedule a free consultation with an attorney today.
More Blog Posts:
Experts Push to Decrease Prescription Errors by Changing Labeling and Packaging, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, November 8, 2017.
Pharmacy Errors Involving High-Alert Medications, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, October 23, 2017.