An estimated 800,000 preventable medication errors happen every year in long-term residential homes in the United States, according to Quality and Safety in Healthcare. When a patient reacts badly to a drug, it is known as an adverse drug event (ADE). ADEs can be serious and may lead to hospitalization, permanent disability, and death.
ADEs are some of the most preventable events in all care settings, from clinics to hospitals to nursing homes. Older adults and young children are more at risk for ADEs caused by medication errors. For seniors, this may be because they may be taking several medications. Polypharmacy, or taking more medications than necessary, may be one of the greatest risk factors for ADEs, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.
If your loved one has suffered from a medication error, it could be because of negligence or wrongdoing by their nursing home or its staff. A Tulsa meditation errors lawyer may be able to help you seek compensation for your loved one’s illness, injury, or death. Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm to learn more.
About Medication Errors
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, about 100,000 potential instances of ADE happen each year.
Medication errors can happen at various stages, from when a doctor prescribes a drug to when a caretaker administers it to a patient. The following examples illustrate the potential for error:
- Prescription errors: can be made if the doctor writes down the wrong medication, the wrong dosage, or the wrong instructions for administering the drug. A doctor may also fail to do the proper checks before re-prescribing a drug that may be causing harm.
- Transcription errors: happen when a pharmacist misreads or misinterprets a prescription. This could be caused by something as simple as illegible handwriting.
- Dispensing errors: occur when a pharmacist or drug technician makes a mistake in filling a prescription. Again, this may include providing the wrong drug, wrong dosage, or inaccurate administration guidelines. Those dispensing medications also should check for adverse reactions to any other drug the patient may be taking.
- Administration errors: This error happens when a caregiver administers the medication to the patient. This type of error can involve the wrong medication, the wrong dosage, or the wrong time of day a patient takes it (more or less often than needed). In a nursing home, administration is the responsibility of the staff.
The side effects of a medication error will be different depending on the patient, the drug, and the nature of the error. Some medication errors result in severe, life-threatening situations, permanent physical harm, and death.
While many medication errors happen because of mistakes, there is evidence that some nursing facilities have wrongly used medications to control patients’ behavior, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. These medications mostly are given to seniors and other patients with Alzheimer’s and dementia in an attempt to control their behavior.
If your loved one suffered from a medication error in their nursing home, a Tulsa medication errors lawyer may be able to help.
Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
For a free legal consultation with an medication errors lawyer serving Tulsa, call (800) 794-0444
Medication errors may be a sign of abuse or neglect at your loved one’s nursing home. Other signs of abuse and neglect may include:
- Lack of bathing and other basic hygiene
- Unanswered calls from patients for assistance
- Bed sores
- Weight loss
- Violent or aggressive behavior in your loved one
- Lack of toileting or changing soiled diapers
- Lack of help with mobility
- Signs of malnutrition or dehydration in your loved one
You should also be aware of signs your loved one’s nursing home is understaffed, or that staff is overworked or undertrained. Sometimes, these factors can lead to unintentional errors and neglect, according to Health Service Insights.
Regardless of the cause, nursing home abuse and neglect are against the law. If you suspect abuse or neglect in your loved one’s nursing home, you should draft a detailed, dated, written report which can be filled with nursing home administration, adult protective services, the Oklahoma State Department of Health, and/or local law enforcement.
Tulsa Medication Errors Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm
When you put your loved one in a nursing home, you are relying on the facility and its staff to treat them with the utmost degree of care. Medication errors can have serious and potentially fatal consequences, and these types of mistakes should never be made.
Nursing homes and their staff should be held responsible for negligence and wrongdoing. If they are responsible for your loved one’s illness, injury, or death, they should be held accountable. A Tulsa medication errors lawyer can help you seek compensation for your loved one’s medical costs, as well as their pain and suffering. If a medication error caused your loved one’s death, you may be able to seek awards on their behalf, as well as compensation for your pain and suffering.
At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, we want to help you fight nursing home abuse and neglect. We can provide you with a risk-free consultation. Should you choose to hire our firm, you pay nothing unless we achieve a successful settlement for you. For more information, contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm.