Maryland pharmacy errors are almost all preventable. Medication errors that occur in the hospital setting are no exception. While a doctor is typically the one who prescribes a patient medication, nurses are frequently the ones who administer the medicine. Often, nurses care for numerous patients, many of which share the same symptoms, take the same medications, or have similar names. It is this potentially confusing situation that introduces the risk that a nurse can make an error in administering medication to a patient.
A recent news report detailed a pharmacy error resulting in the death of a patient. Evidently, the patient, Mrs. Cook, was in room 26. Two doors down was another patient named Mrs. Cock. Mrs. Cock was prescribed hydromorphone, a powerful painkiller that was kept in a secured cabinet in the hospital’s medication room. However, Mrs. Cook was accidentally given Mrs. Cock’s hydromorphone pills. Within nine days, Mrs. Cook died.
Two nurses were present when Mrs. Cook was given the incorrect medication. When asked about the incident, the nurse who was primarily responsible for Mrs. Cook’s care claimed that a registered nurse who was helping out was responsible for the error. He also stated that he did not see the registered nurse administer the medication to Mrs. Cook because he was busy reviewing Mrs. Cook’s chart. The nurse acknowledged that the two women were “physically quite different.” He also admitted that Mrs. Cock was able to walk while Mrs. Cook was often confused and needed assistance with most daily activities.
After the nurse’s explanation was determined to be “self-serving,” he was questioned again. In subsequent questioning, the nurse admitted that he watched the registered nurse give Mrs. Cook the medication. He also stated that he did have an opportunity to notice the mistake, but failed to realize that the drug was being given to the wrong patient.
The registered nurse explained that she read the patient’s name and prescription number aloud before administering the medication to Mrs. Cook, as hospital protocol requires. The registered nurse went on to explain that the lead nurse replied “yep” as though to indicate the medication was being given to the correct patient. It was later determined that the lead nurse was purposefully deceptive in his initial version of the events, and that he was simply not paying attention while the registered nurse gave Mrs. Cook the medication.
Consult with a Dedicated Maryland Pharmacy Error Attorney
If you or a loved one has recently been the victim of a medical professional’s negligence, contact the dedicated Maryland pharmacy error law firm, Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC. At our Maryland-based personal injury law firm, we represent clients and their family members in a wide range of personal injury claims, and have been successfully doing so for over 20 years. We pride ourselves in standing up for the rights of injury victims across Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. in medical malpractice, wrongful death, and pharmacy error claims. To learn more about how we can help you with your current situation, call 410-654-3600 today.