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Pharmacist Malpractice

Pharmacist Malpractice Patient Lawsuits

Pharmacist Malpractice | Lawsuits, Lawyers | Injury, Deaths | Dispensing Errors, Unrealistic Workload Requirements, Inadequate Technician Assistance

The high number of prescriptions filled daily by pharmacists can result in negligent and reckless mistakes. A misfiled prescription has the potential to be deadly. Recent television programs have featured stories on misfiled prescriptions and many patients have discovered that the pill in the container is not what was ordered. As a result these errors are responsible for severe injuries and death to individuals who rely on their pharmacist to ensure the medication they receive is the same as the one their physician prescribed.

Pharmacy experts say a big part of the problem is a shortage of pharmacists. "Right now, the number of pharmacists is growing about 1-2 percent a year and the amount of work that each pharmacy is doing is increasing," says Pharmacist Dave DePersio at Vanderbilt Medical Center1. The frequency in which physicians change out generic and brand name prescriptions is also a contributing factor, as a common drug may have multiple names.

In a study of 500 pharmacist malpractice claims conducted by Pharmacists Mutual Insurance Company, the following types of errors were identified: Wrong Drug Dispensed 52%, Wrong Strength Dispensed 27%, Wrong Directions Given 7.4%, for a total of 86.4% of errors that could have been prevented.

A Pharmacy Today survey (published December 15, 1996) asked, "What could cause dispensing errors?" Of 187 responses from 171 pharmacists and 16 pharmacy paraprofessionals, insufficient filling time and too many distractions were identified as two of the major areas of concern. Ringing telephones and customer questions unrelated to medication were frequent sources of interruption.

Unrealistic workload requirements, inadequate technician assistance, and a non supportive system (with no provision for one person to check the work of another) were also identified as factors that can increase the rate of error. In short, many dispensing errors are caused by stress, distraction, or lack of backup.

Hospital Medications Errors

According to data from a 1999 study funded by the Institute of Medicine medical errors in hospitals cause between 44,000 and 98,000 deaths each year. A report from a healthcare quality ratings company hat was conducted in 2004, determined that from 2002 through 2002 an approximate 195,000 hospital patients died each year as a result of medication errors. Medication slip-ups are a common occurrence in hospitals across the United States.

Why Hospital Medication Errors Occur

  • Patients given medications at wrong time.
  • Patients given wrong dosages.
  • Patients given wrong medications.
  • Patients do not receive medications at all.
  • Illegible prescriptions

Legal Help For Victims Affected By Pharmacist Malpractice

If you or a loved one have been injured as a result of pharmacist malpractice, please fill out the form at the right for a free case evaluation by a qualified attorney or call us at 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529).


Pharmacist MalpracticeRSS Feed

Drug Database Concerns

Jul 28, 2006 |
Over one-million people a year are harmed by medication errors, and the medical community is scrambling to find a solution. Now a UVa doctor believes he has figured out part of the solution. Dr. Scott Strayer believes drug databases are partly to blame. His research found that on average it took 109 days to update several known databases about recalled medicines. Research conducted by the Assistant Professor of Family Medicine at UVa shows only two out of 15 popular physician drug databases...

CVS/Pharmacy Agrees to Hire Safety Group to Oversee Its Medicine Dispensing Practices after Numerous Prescription Errors

Feb 11, 2006 | Newsinferno News Staff
Following complaints of 80 prescription errors in 2005, CVS/Pharmacy, the largest drug chain in Massachusetts, has agreed to be overseen by a non-profit group that will employ unannounced inspections and other monitoring methods to examine how the store fills and dispenses prescriptions.According to the state Board of Pharmacy, CVS dispensed the wrong prescriptions 62 times in 2005. The chain also accumulated 80 prescription mix-up complaints out of a state-wide total of 148 (54%).In response...

CVS Probe Finds Prescription Errors

Feb 9, 2006 | AP
A state investigation of CVS pharmacies confirmed dozens of prescription errors since 2002, including one that sent a 4-year-old girl to the hospital, officials said Thursday.Other problems identified during onsite inspections included look-alike medications being stocked next to each other, improperly labeled inventory and a poor ratio of pharmacists to support personnel.None of the 62 verified errors or other problems were fatal, said Jean Pontikas, director of the Department of Public Health...

Man Says CVS Gave Daughter Wrong Drug

Jan 1, 2006
A Raynham, Mass., family is warning people to closely check their prescriptions after a 5-year-old girl received an adult dose of Valium by mistake.NewsCenter 5's Rhondella Richardson reported that Rick Ferranti's daughter, Kayla, left preschool Friday still complaining of stomach pain. The family is returning to the CVS on Bedford Street in East Bridgewater after learning Thursday night that a pharmacist there gave the 5-year-old girl valium instead of the bladder relaxer she needed after...

Prescription Mix-Ups Common

Dec 18, 2005 |
Stop and check those pills and read the label before you leave the pharmacy. Mistakes with medication may happen more often than you think.In fact, experts report pharmacists; hospitals and other health facilities make thousands of mistakes every month. Two back surgeries sent Annie Jackson to a doctor for pain medication prescriptions she had filled last week.She decided to read up before taking the new pills and discovered a medicine mix up that Jackson says would not have killed her, but...

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