How Medication Errors Happen and What to Do

How Medication Errors Happen and What to Do

Medication errors can lead to tragic consequences for patients. Reactions to medication errors range from overdoses to life-threatening adverse reactions. One small writing or prescription error is all it takes to cause internal injuries or death. Being aware of these errors, how they happen, and what you can do after you have experienced the negative effects of a medication error can be vital for protecting yourself and your finances. You can also talk to an experienced Oklahoma medical malpractice lawyer to figure out your options for compensation. 

Common Causes of Medication Errors

There are different causes of medication errors that range from patient errors to medical professional errors. The process of giving medications to patients goes through various steps. First, your doctor determines whether you need medicine and then which type of medicine to prescribe first. An error can happen in this step alone if your doctor misdiagnoses you or fails to ask if you are allergic to an aspect of that medicine.

Then, the doctor sends the written prescription to the pharmacy or through a nurse and when the prescriptions are re-rewritten or typed out, multiple errors can happen. For example, How Medication Errors Happen and What to Doabbreviations for medications are commonly used along with specific numbers for dosing and other technical aspects. This leaves a lot of room for simple human mistakes with mixing up abbreviations that look similar or writing one number out of a number sequence incorrectly.

Slight changes to routines in pharmacies have also been known to lead to medication errors. For example, a change in the location of a compartment in a resuscitation cart can throw a worker off and lead to the retrieval of the wrong medication. Medications with updated or changed label colors can also throw workers off. In times of feeling rushed, almost anyone can make a mistake.

Compensation for Damages Caused by Medication Errors

Medication errors lead to around 7,000 to 9,000 fatalities each year in the United States. Most of these deaths are caused by adverse reactions and overdoses from medications. Out of all the steps that go into the process of giving medications to patients, one of the higher ones is ordering errors.

Ordering errors make up 50% of medication errors. Distractions make up 75% of medication errors. Errors can also happen during transcribing, dispensing, administering, and monitoring. Common types of medication errors include omission, wrong times listed, unauthorized medicines, monitoring errors, and wrong dosages. 

When you decide to file a medical malpractice claim after a medication error, it is important to know these types of errors. That way, you can defend and collect evidence for the medication error you experienced. 

Medical Malpractice Lawyer in Oklahoma 

Filing a medical malpractice claim after experiencing damages by a medication error can feel overwhelming and you may be unsure of where to start. Try talking to a medical negligence lawyer in Oklahoma to see what steps you can take. You may be eligible to receive compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages. Contact the Law Firm of Griffin Reynolds at (405) 721-9500 for a free consultation today.