Common Medication Mistakes Can Cause Injuries Or Death

18 December

The last thing you expect when you go to the hospital or another medical facility is that you will sustain an injury or illness caused by the actions of a health care professional. Unfortunately, Johns Hopkins researchers have said that medical mistakes are the third leading cause of death across the United States each year. Annually, more than 250,000 people lose their lives due to preventable medical errors, according to researchers. Some of these errors involve the administration of prescription medications. Here, we want to discuss some of the most common medication mistakes that can cause injuries or death.

How do medication mistakes happen? 

Most people have made a mistake when taking their medications, particularly if they are on a significant number of medications at once. Sometimes, a person may take the wrong dose or take a dosage of medication too soon. However, there are times when medical professionals make mistakes too, such as a pharmacist dispensing the wrong medication or the right medication in the wrong dosage. In the health care setting, a doctor may prescribe the wrong medication, or a nurse may administer an incorrect medication or an incorrect dosage.

According to The US Food and Drug Administration, approximately 1.3 million people are harmed due to medication errors each year in the United States. Researchers discovered that most of the medication errors in their study group were preventable.

The medications most frequently associated with adverse medical outcomes included those used for high blood pressure, pain relief, and insulin control.

Preventing harmful medical errors

The most common cause of medication errors tends to be related to dosing mistakes, taking the wrong medication, or accidentally taking the same medication twice. Some of the best ways to avoid these errors include:

  • Patients talking to their doctor or pharmacist about all medications they are prescribed and asking questions about when the medication should be taken. Even in the hospital setting, there is nothing wrong with the patient being their own advocate and asking questions about their medications.
  • Patients developing a system for keeping track of when to take their medications. Pill organizers are an incredibly effective way to keep track of medications, particularly when there are many medications that need to be taken during the day.
  • Patients making sure that their doctor or nurse know which medications they have been taking as well as any medications they are allergic to.

However, no matter how vigilant a patient may be about their medications, there are times when medical professionals make mistakes and administered the wrong medication or the wrong dosage of a medication.

Call a Hawaii medical malpractice attorney today

If you or somebody you care about has sustained an illness caused by the negligent or careless administration of prescription medication, contact the team at Kurzban, Kurzban, Tetzeli, and Pratt today. Our qualified attorneys have extensive experience handling complex medical malpractice cases throughout Hawaii. We are ready to conduct a complete investigation into your case so we can secure the compensation you are entitled to. When you need a Hawaii medication mistakes attorney, you can contact us for a free consultation by clicking here or calling 866-377-3676.

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