While pharmacists are certainly busy medical professionals, there is no excuse to cut corners or to engage in any shortcuts that could potentially put a patient’s life at risk. However, despite the importance of a pharmacist’s role in a patient’s overall medical care, there are often lapses in care or judgment that put recovering patients at an increased risk of re-admission to the hospital. Similarly, even patients picking up routine medications are put at risk of serious complications when pharmacy errors are made.
Legally, pharmacists have a duty to ensure that they provide a certain level of acceptable care. To be sure, this does not mean that a pharmacist can be held liable for every adverse drug reaction; however, when there is evidence that a pharmacist did not provide the adequate level of care, patients who suffered as a result may be entitled to monetary compensation for their injuries.
Proving that a pharmacist’s actions were legally deficient is not difficult in many pharmacy error cases, especially when the case involves allegations of the pharmacist providing a patient with the wrong medication or the wrong dosage of the correct medication. However, one of the most common areas in which plaintiffs run into problems is in establishing causation. Causation is an element in almost all pharmacy error cases that requires the plaintiff to establish that the defendant’s negligent act resulted in their injuries. In pharmacy error cases, this often requires the testimony of one or more medical experts.
Recent Report Finds Elderly at Heightened Risk of Pharmacy Errors
The elderly are more susceptible to a variety of health concerns, and pharmacy errors are no exception. In part, this is due to the number of medications the average person over 65 takes. A recent industry study considered hospital admission rates among the elderly, finding that nearly 20% of all admissions were due to adverse drug reactions. Of those, the researchers determined that 90% were preventable, and the average stay in the hospital after an error was approximately six days.
There were several types of errors the researchers saw repeatedly, including providing the patient with the wrong dosage or frequency. Other errors included failing to inform patients about potential interactions the medication may have with other medications the patient is currently taking.
Have You Been a Victim of a Pharmacy Error?
If you or a loved one has recently been a victim of a pharmacy error, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. The skilled personal injury and wrongful death attorneys at the Maryland law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen Personal Injury Lawyers have extensive experience handling all kinds of pharmacy error cases. With our dedication, experience, and diligence in your corner, you can feel confident that your case is in good hands. Call 410-654-3600 to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case with an attorney today.
More Blog Posts:
Pharmacist Convicted of Charges Related to Deadly Meningitis Outbreak, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, April 10, 2017.
Woman Files Federal Lawsuit Against National Pharmacy Chain Following Serious Prescription Error, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, March 27, 2017.