Speak with an experienced attorney that can get you the compensation you deserve. It's free and confidential.Get Yours Now
Even by the most conservative estimates, mistakes made in issuing medication to patients cause at least one death per day in the United States, the Food & Drug Administration says.
However, that’s a small portion of the estimated 1.3 million Americans annually who are harmed or made ill because of improper medications or incorrect dosages administered by doctors or pharmacists.
In 2000, the highly regarded Journal of the American Medical Association estimated that 106,000 Americans die annually because of the side effects of prescribed drugs.
The FDA classifies medication error as “any preventable event that may cause or lead to inappropriate medication use or patient harm while the medication is in the control of the health-care professional, patient or consumer.” No question, for any patient who suffered as a result of a medication mistake, the key word is “preventable.”
By whatever definition, thousands of mistakes are made on a daily basis by trusted health professionals, which is why litigation experts Weitz & Luxenberg have been recovering compensation for their clients for decades through medical malpractice lawsuits.
Overall, medical errors are the third-leading cause of death in the United States, and prescription errors account for a notable percentage of the fatalities.
If a patient’s condition hasn’t improved after starting medication treatment, or if it has worsened or led to other complications, it’s possible that the wrong drug has been prescribed.
Medication errors can happen in a variety of circumstances:
If that’s the case, the patient may be entitled to financial damages and should consult a specialized law firm with experience in the medical malpractice arena. Weitz & Luxenberg is an acknowledged national leader in the prosecution of cases involving medication mistakes that injured or killed unwitting patients.
The National Coordinating Council for Medication Error Reporting and Prevention website includes a list of dangerous prescription abbreviations and potential handwriting errors that features a dozen examples. The NCCMERP in 2013 called for the elimination of prescription time guarantees at pharmacies, because haste often leads to mistakes. The council also said that profit-driven pharmacies’ focus on speed and prescription volume can have “detrimental effects” on patient education and patient safety.
The FDA’s Division of Medication Error Prevention and Analysis even reviews the names of meds to help reduce the possibility of confusion. In some cases, a drug company’s “proprietary name” might be altered to lessen the chances of error.
That said, the Institute for Safe Medication Practices website features a list of commonly confused drug names that contains an astounding nine pages of citations, with dozens of drugs per page.
Considering those numbers, it’s not surprising that the FDA reviews about 1,400 claims of medication errors per month, then analyzes them to determine the cause and types of error involved.
Yet bureaucratic classifications and hollow explanations don’t much matter to a patient who was left ill, injured or dead because of a preventable medication mistake.
With more than $17 billion in overall compensation earned in client-injury cases over parts of four decades, Weitz & Luxenberg specializes in medically-related lawsuits and our staff would love to help by discussing the details of any medication-related case in a free consultation.
We would feel privileged to assist you. For a free case review, please contact us todayGet Yours Now