You have the right to receive safe and accurate prescriptions from your health care providers in Philadelphia. Unfortunately, many individuals in your city fall victim to prescription errors every year, leading to serious health complications . . . and even death in some cases. In these cases, it can be hard to prove that mistakes were made or that you were wrongly prescribed medication.
That’s why it is important for you to know your rights and understand how you can protect yourself from prescription errors. The Cochran Firm is here to provide advice, legal guidance, and representation if necessary if you are the victim of a prescription error in Philadelphia. In this article, we’ll discuss the common types of prescription errors that occur in Philadelphia and how you can protect yourself and your loved ones from becoming victims of these avoidable medical mistakes.
How Common Are Prescription Errors in Philadelphia?
If you or someone you know has been prescribed medication in Philadelphia, it’s important to understand the potential risks of prescription errors. According to reports, prescription error is one of the most common medical mistakes in the U.S., and Philadelphia is no exception.
Every day, patients in Pennsylvania hospitals and pharmacies are at risk of not receiving the right medicine or being given incorrect dosages. Some may be given medication they’re allergic to or even find themselves receiving experimental drugs without their knowledge. Unfortunately, such errors can have serious consequences for patients—from drug interactions to life-threatening side effects.
It’s important to be aware of your rights as a patient and know when you might be entitled to seek damages from a prescription mistake. It’s also important to recognize the signs of a potential error so that you can take steps to protect yourself from harm.
What Causes These Errors in Philadelphia?
Tragically, there are often preventable causes of prescription errors in Philadelphia, from physician mistakes to medical negligence. Some of the most common issues that contribute to medication mix-ups include:
- Failure to review a patient’s medical history: If a doctor does not review a patient’s current medications or any potential allergies or contraindications before prescribing a new medication, it can lead to dangerous errors.
- Inexperienced staff or technicians: Employees and technicians can mistakenly fill prescriptions incorrectly, such as selecting the wrong drug from the pharmacy shelf or entering wrong dosage information into the patient’s record.
- Miscommunication between health care providers: Disruptions in communication between physicians and pharmacists resulting in unchecked interactions between medications can also lead to prescription errors.
- Improvement in pharmacy technology: The inconsistency of pharmacists and technicians inputting data into the computer systems can lead to human error which can result in an incorrect prescription for the patient.
Prescription errors are not necessarily caused by one single factor, but rather by multiple complex factors working together. Therefore, if you or your loved one has suffered from a medication mix-up or other medication error, it is important to get help from an experienced legal team like ours who understands how these issues arise.
What Types of Harm Can a Prescription Error Cause?
Prescription errors can have dire consequences, and it’s so important to stay informed about your rights. While every situation is unique, some of the types of harm that can result from a prescription error include:
- Serious physical harm or even death. If a doctor prescribes the wrong medication or dosage, it can lead to a variety of health complications that can range from mild to life-threatening.
- Mental anguish. In some cases, an incorrect prescription can lead to extreme emotional pain and suffering.
- Financial loss. A prescription error could mean long-term medical care costs and associated expenses, meaning you might have to pay out of pocket for doctor visits, medications or treatments that wouldn’t have been necessary otherwise.
The bottom line is that taking medication should enhance your quality of life—not take away from it by making you sicker or putting you in financial hardship. Even though prescription errors are surprisingly common in Philadelphia, if you know your rights you can protect yourself from the potential harms of a prescription error.
What Is an Overdose or Underdose?
It can be hard to tell whether a dose of a medicine is too high or too low, but you should know your rights in case you’ve been the victim of an overdose or underdose. An overdose is when you take too much of the medication and an underdose is when not enough is taken.
For example, if the doctor prescribes a medication that requires precise dosing instructions and those instructions are not followed, then it can result in serious injury or even death.
Symptoms of Overdose/Underdose
The most common symptoms of overdosing on medication include nausea, vomiting and/or an irregular heartbeat. If these symptoms occur after taking a dose of medicine, it is important to seek medical attention immediately as it could be an indication that you have taken too much and require medical attention.
Underdosing can also have serious consequences. Symptoms include extreme fatigue, dizziness, weakness and confusion. Again, if these symptoms occur after taking a dose of medicine, seek medical attention as soon as possible.
At The Cochran Firm Philadelphia, we are here to protect your rights when you become the victim of prescription error—whether it be an overdose or underdose—and will work to get you the compensation you deserve for any injury that may occur.
Who Is Liable for a Prescription Error?
When you’re dealing with a prescription error, you need to know who is liable for the mistake. It could be the pharmacist, physician, nurse practitioner, hospital, or another medical professional—it all depends on the situation. Here are some of the parties that could be held liable if they were negligent and caused a prescription error:
The pharmacy can be held liable if they failed to follow procedures that were established by your health plan and/or state law. For example, if they issued a medication without checking with your doctor first or without informing you about side effects or drug interactions.
The doctor can be held liable if they prescribed a medication that was outside of their scope of expertise or didn’t explain possible side effects properly. They could also be held accountable for over-prescribing certain drugs to patients who don’t need them or failing to recognize potential drug interactions before prescribing a medication.
Insurance companies may also be held responsible if they failed to cover the cost of the prescription drugs due to negligence or miscommunication between them and the healthcare provider.
It’s important to remember that it isn’t always easy to determine who is at fault in any given situation when it involves a prescription error. The best course of action is to contact an experienced personal injury attorney who can investigate your claim and help you seek justice from those responsible for your prescription mistake.
Frequently Asked Questions
Prescription errors can be extremely confusing. Below are some of the most frequently asked questions regarding prescription mistakes and how to protect yourself.
Do I Have to Sign a Release When I Receive a Prescription?
It’s important for all patients to understand what they’re signing, even if it looks like a routine form. The best way to ensure that you’re getting the correct medication is to make sure you understand exactly what you’re signing.
What Should I Do If I’m Worried About My Prescription?
You can always double-check with your pharmacist or doctor before taking any new medication. You should be mindful of any side effects that may occur when taking a new medication and report them immediately.
What Should I Do If I Believe I Have Been the Victim of a Prescription Error?
If you believe you have been the victim of a prescription error, you should contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney such as The Cochran Firm.
The Cochran Firm has extensive experience in handling cases related to prescriptions errors in Philadelphia. If you’ve suffered harm and think that these mistakes might be responsible, don’t hesitate to reach out for help so we can get started on your case as soon as possible.
Why Choose Our Firm?
If you’re looking for an experienced, knowledgeable law firm to help you protect your rights and get the justice you deserve, The Cochran Firm is a great choice. With decades of experience in cases involving prescription errors, we have the expertise to successfully represent your interests.
At The Cochran Firm, we understand that seeking legal representation can be intimidating and stressful. That’s why it’s our goal to make sure our clients are informed and comfortable throughout every step of the process. We want to be an advocate for you during this difficult time and strive for excellent results for every case we take on.
Here are some of the ways we can help:
- We will listen to your story, answer any questions you have about your situation, and provide legal advice tailored to your individual needs.
- We will thoroughly investigate your case and do everything in our power to strengthen it so that we can prove negligence in court.
- Our experienced attorneys will fight aggressively for your rights so that you’re fairly compensated after a prescription error or medical malpractice incident has occurred.
- We will keep you informed every step of the way so there are no surprises during the process.
- All initial consultations with us are free, so give us a call today!
Prescription errors are a major problem in Philadelphia and a huge burden for affected individuals. Unfortunately, these errors can cause serious harm, which can lead to pain, costly medical bills and high levels of stress. Fortunately, there are laws in place that protect patients from negligent pharmacists and healthcare professionals.
At The Cochran Firm, we offer experienced representation for victims of prescription errors in Philadelphia. Our team of dedicated attorneys are well-versed in medical malpractice law and have the resources to help you hold negligent pharmacists and health care professionals accountable. If you’ve been the victim of a prescription error, we can help you fight for your rights.
Contact us at 800-969-4400 today to get started with a free consultation.