Medical patients all across the state of California make frequent visits to their local pharmacy. Often times, patients have their regular medications refilled; other times, they are starting a prescription medication for the first time. In either case, patients expect that the medications they receive are correct and accurate. We here at the Law Offices of William C. Bibb have handled many cases, however, where pharmacy errors have resulted in serious and even fatal injuries.
The Modern Medicine Network discusses the nature and prevalence of pharmacy errors, and explains that they are disturbingly common. The results of a 10-year study found that of pharmacy errors that were identified, almost 32 percent were the result of patients receiving the wrong dose, and almost 44 percent were caused by patients receiving the wrong drug. It was also determined that pharmacy-related mistakes resulted in patient death almost 12 percent of the time.
Those who analyzed the findings of the study found that several factors contributed to avoidable and dangerous pharmacy mistakes. Human error on the part of pharmacists and pharmacy technicians played the largest role in patients receiving either the wrong medication or dosage. In many cases, pharmacists simply took the wrong medication off the shelf. Other times, pharmacists underestimated or disregarded the risks associated with medication dispensing errors. Patient misidentification was another major cause of avoidable medication errors, along with improper computer coding.
While no one can completely eliminate human error from happening, it is the responsibility of pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, and pharmacy owners to implement and maintain quality-control systems at all times. The health and safety of medical patients depends upon the proper dispensing of medications. In the event that a pharmacist and/or pharmacy facility is found to be negligent in implementing and enforcing safety and quality control protocols, that party may be held liable for resulting patient injuries.
Pharmacy errors and other medical malpractice incidents can and do cause serious injuries to patients every year. Contact the Law Offices of William C. Bibb to learn more about liability and damages in such cases.