Kingston Medical Malpractice Attorneys Helping Victims of Medication Errors
Modern pharmaceuticals can be extremely powerful tools in combatting pain and disease in patients. These drugs can also bring serious harm when errors are made during the prescription or administration process. Medication errors are both highly dangerous and largely preventable, and medical facilities that allow these errors to occur deserve to be held accountable.
If you or a loved one has been injured by a medication error in New York, you may be entitled to money damages to help you cover the costs of additional medical care, lost wages, or pain and suffering. Find out if you have a legal claim by contacting the Hudson Valley medical malpractice lawyers at Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello, LLP for a no-cost consultation on your case.
Medication errors a common problem
Research shows that medication errors are one of the most common forms of medical malpractice. Approximately 5% of all those admitted to a hospital are the victim of some form of medication error, also known as an adverse drug event (ADE). Every year, 700,000 people across the US must seek emergency care due to a medication error, and 100,000 of those require hospitalization to treat their injury. Some estimates state that about 90% of medication errors are determined to have been preventable.
Physicians and pharmacists can choose from between over 10,000 drugs to prescribe to their patients. With such a great array of options, doctors must exercise great caution in choosing the best option for their patient. Experts estimate that nearly a third of adult Americans are on five or more medications. As a result, doctors must offer careful consideration to the potential interactions that could result from a given prescription.
How medication errors happen
- Poor communication between medical professionals: When doctors fail to issue a complete report when handing off care of a patient upon a shift change or to a new physician, or fail to carefully record the actions taken in the course of caring for a patient, the drugs that have been prescribed or issued to a patient may not be reported in full. This can result in duplicate dosage or administration of drugs that have a harmful interaction.
- Negligent drug storage or labeling practices: If hospitals or pharmacies do not clearly label drugs in storage, then there will exist greater opportunities for errors to be made in filling prescriptions or administering drugs to patients.
- Negligent administration of drugs: Doctors or nurses must take care to select the correct drug, as well as correctly calculate the appropriate dosage for a patient and regularly inspect whether the patient is suffering harmful effects.
- Errors related to similarly-named drugs, or drugs with similar abbreviations: Drug companies must make efforts not to choose a name similar to an existing drug, in order to reduce the chances that a doctor or pharmacist will confuse the two.
Help is Available after Harmful Medication Errors in the Hudson Valley
If you or a loved one have been harmed by a medication error or ADE, seek legal counsel to find out if you should file a lawsuit based on your injuries by contacting the knowledgeable, dedicated, and trial-ready Hudson Valley medication error lawyers at Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello, LLP for a consultation, at 845-236-4411 (Marlboro), or at 845-331-4100 (Kingston).