Most of us obtain prescriptions from doctors at one time or another. You might get an antibiotic prescription to treat a sinus infection, or medication to control your blood cholesterol. Each of us are relying upon our healthcare providers to prescribe the proper drug and dosage for our needs.
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Consequences of Pharmacist Error
In a similar fashion, you also rely on your pharmacy to fill the drug properly and how it was intended by the prescribing physician. However, with many prescriptions, there is no margin for error. With the state of modern healthcare technology, doctors and pharmacists have the ability to know all of the drugs that their patients are taking. They should be able to identify any possible dangerous drug interaction.
Unfortunately, this does not always happen. Most people have seen news reports where doctors, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians have made serious errors in prescribing drugs and mistakes in drug dispensation at the pharmacy.
There are many errors that occur when drugs are prescribed and dispensed these days. From mistakes in reading the prescriptions of doctors, to dosage and usage errors, all of us are at the mercy of pharmacists in particular. Many pharmacists work in large drug store chains where there is a strong incentive to process as many prescriptions as quickly as possible to make a good profit.
Prescription drug errors are very common in the US. But there is not a lot known about how many pharmacy errors there are in the country each year. We do know that they happen: A study by Auburn University in 2003 found that of the 3 billion prescriptions done each year in the US, there are more than 50 million pharmacy errors in a typical year, with thousands of deaths.
But sadly, many people never decide to pursue legal action in the case of a pharmacy mistake or prescription drug error. Most people do not realize that they have legal options when a pharmacist has made an error with a prescription drug. For example, if a person is prescribed the wrong drug and has a stroke, they have a very serious medical condition that has caused potentially devastating and permanent damage. Not only is that person possibly never going to be the same again, he also will face months of rehabilitation, physical therapy and medical costs. He also could miss work and have difficulty meeting his financial obligations.
Pharmacy error and prescription error attorneys are able to successfully represent patients who have been hurt by pharmacist and pharmacy mistakes. These cases have included ones where the wrong drug was prescribed, or the wrong dosage was filled.