Millions of Americans have filled a prescription at some point in their
lives. While we trust our medications to help with our needs, prescription
errors can cause significant harm. Many
medication errors are discovered before they can cause harm, but 1.3 million Americans are
injured by prescription errors each year. Prescription mistakes are surprisingly
common, considering the serious consequences that can arise from these errors.
What Are the Most Common Medication Errors?
In a study by the FDA, which evaluated reports of fatal medication errors
between 1993 and 1998, it was found that the most common mistake was dispensing
the wrong dose of medication. This accounted for 41% of the errors studied.
Administering the wrong medications and using the wrong method of administration
each accounted for about 16% of the errors.
Those over the age of 60 are the most at risk of fatal medication errors.
This may be due to the fact that many older individuals take multiple
prescriptions, and may confuse them.
How You Can Prevent Medication Errors
Ideally, medication should be dispensed properly and taken according to
the directions. Mistakes can occur, but you can help prevent these mistakes
from causing injury. Here are some things you can do to help protect yourself:
- Ask your doctor to tell you the name of the drug, the correct dosage, and
the use of the medication for every new prescription.
- Be sure you understand the directions for any medication you are taking,
including the dosage, storage requirements, and special instructions.
- Talk to your pharmacist before beginning any new medications, and discuss
over-the-counter medications with them as well.
- If you are in the hospital, ask about any medications you are given. If
you will not be able to ask, instruct a friend or relative to ask about it.
- If your doctor is giving you a new prescription, be sure to tell them about
your current medications, including over-the-counter medications and dietary
supplements you are taking. This can prevent serious drug interactions.
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions, especially if the medication looks
different than expected, the directions are different than you had been
told, or the name of your medication is different.
- Find a system to help you keep track of your medication doses to ensure
that you don’t miss or skip doses.
Get in Touch with Our Orlando Medical Malpractice Attorneys - (855) 338-0720
Medication errors can be deadly, which is why it is important to prevent
these mistakes at every level. If you were the victim of negligent medical
care and a prescription mistake caused you to sustain an injury, you have
the right to file a claim for compensation. At
The Maher Law Firm, we have spent more than 45 years fighting for the rights of injured patients.
medical malpractice attorneys will be with you through every step of your claim and ensure
that you stay informed of the latest updates on your case.
free case evaluation to learn more.
Contact our team online or call (855) 338-0720.