As Online Retailer Enters Pharmaceutical Business, Some Are Advocating for Change

The online retail giant Amazon recently announced that it would soon be entering the pharmacy business. With Amazon’s impressive delivery network, the company believes that it has a service to offer those who would otherwise need to travel to the nearest pharmacy to fill their prescription. Some believe that Amazon’s entrance into the pharmacy business may reduce the number of Maryland prescription errors.

pillsDue to the volume of transactions that Amazon handles annually, some are seeing Amazon’s entrance into the pharmacy business as an opportunity for the industry to make major strides toward a safer process. The idea is that Amazon has the clout necessary to make pharmaceutical companies make changes to the way drugs are packaged and marketed.

According to a recent industry news report, the leading cause of pharmacy errors is inadvertence. Simply stated, most pharmacy errors are results of a busy pharmacist grabbing the wrong medication because its name or packaging is so similar to the medication the patient requires. And, according to the article, drug manufacturers have little reason to change because they are not normally held liable for errors. However, the article notes that as Amazon enters the business, the company may be able to use its influence to require manufacturers to make changes to the way companies package and market their drugs, potentially resulting in an overall decrease in the amount of pharmacy errors.

The article recommends using sealed containers, such as blister packs, sachets, or pouches, rather than the larger bulk-containers that are currently used to dispense medication. By so doing, a drug manufacturer decreases not only the chance that a pharmacist would quickly fill a prescription with the wrong medication, but also the chance of contamination. This method would also virtually eliminate the potential that an illegal operator could switch out the real medication for fake pills. Interestingly, the article also notes that most other countries require medication to be packaged in smaller patient-specific packages.

Maryland Pharmacy Errors

Maryland pharmacists have a duty to make sure that the medication they provide to their patients is exactly what is on their prescription. When an error does occur, the pharmacist may be liable to the patient for any harm or injury caused by the mix-up. In many cases, the pharmacy itself can also be named in the lawsuit, potentially increasing the chance of a full and fair recovery.

Have You Been a Victim of a Maryland Prescription 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 skilled Maryland personal injury and wrongful death attorneys at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC have extensive experience handling all types of pharmacy error claims, and they know what it takes to be successful on their clients’ behalf. Call 410-654-3600 to schedule a free consultation with an attorney to discuss your case 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.

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