Medication errors occur every day and in most recent years, they have received significant attention from the media and have been the subject of many studies. But such studies often focus on adult errors rather than pediatric errors. Children may be at greater risk because of the additional calculations and variations in medication for children. A recent study with implications for Maryland medication error victims looked at the occurrence of ten-fold medication errors in children.
According to the article, results from the study were recently released after the two-year study was conducted on pediatric ten-fold medication errors. In one case, a professional administered an unintentional ten-fold overdose to a four-year-old child. The investigation looked at medication errors not just in prescribing, but also in dispensing and administering doses. A consultant explained that there are more steps involved to calculate a children’s prescription than an adult prescription. The dosing for children is often based on weight. Sometimes another calculation needs to be to convert medicine to a liquid formula and sometimes another calculation to adjust the concentration based on the specific product that is available.
The study showed that of the ten-fold medication errors that occurred during the study, the vast majority—76 percent—occurred during the prescription phase. Another 20 percent occurred while administering the medication and 4 percent while dispensing it. The study offered solutions to decrease pediatric medication errors, such as shifting medications from liquid form to tablet form but noted that not enough is known about such errors to give a clear solution.
In the event of a Maryland pediatric medication error, the victim (or someone filing on the victim’s behalf) will have to show that the error was caused because of an error in the prescription, administration, or dispensing process, including by failing to give clear and adequate instructions and warnings. In a negligence claim, a plaintiff will have to show that a defendant owed a duty of care to the child, that the defendant failed to meet the applicable standard of care by acting or failing to act in some way, that the plaintiff was injured because of the defendant’s negligent acts or failure to act, and that the plaintiff suffered damages as a result. These cases often require testimony from an expert who can state how the defendant’s actions failed to meet the standard of care and how those actions caused the victim’s injuries.
Contact a Dedicated Maryland Medication Error Lawyer
Children who have been the victim of Maryland medication errors deserve to seek compensation for their injuries and to hold those responsible liable for their actions. At Lebowitz & Mzhen, Personal Injury Lawyers, our legal team can guide victims through each step of the proceedings, ranging from the initial investigation through settlement negotiations and any litigation that becomes necessary. Maryland medication error victims should consult a knowledgeable Maryland medication error lawyer who can retain a persuasive expert on their behalf and adhere to the complicated procedural rules in these cases. Contact Lebowitz & Mzhen online or call 1-800-654-1949 to set up a free consultation.