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Medication error heavily contributes to hospital malpractice claims

Instances of medical malpractice are rampant in the whole nation, and New York City is no exception. People visit hospitals and medical centers to get rid of illness and physical pain, but hospital malpractice sometimes occurs. Medication errors are a serious issue and victims need to be aware of their rights to compensation in these situations.

A new research study focusing on preventable medication errors found that over one million patients every year are affected by the incorrect use of injected drugs in the United States. The medical professional liability claims resulting from hospitalization because of injected drug errors cost approximately $72,000 on average per hospital every year.

The authors of the research say that most of the medication errors occur during the drug administration process. The study suggests that hospitals commonly opt for the least expensive possible drugs and treatment options. The use of multi-dose vials instead of prefilled syringes is only one such example. The study found that hospitals generally overlook the damage malpractice can cause in victims’ lives when they are making decisions about drugs and supplies, focusing instead on the high price of supplies, like prefilled syringes.

Medication errors are very common. A number of patients experience harmful side effects from medication errors. Doctors, nurses and other hospital staff can potentially be negligent in prescribing and administering drugs to patients. Such negligence could result in severe complications and other health-related issues and could even prove fatal.

Keeping in mind the possibility of human error, the law requires pharmacies to strongly warn medical service providers to stick to a strict method of drug prescription and administration. A violation of this may result in incorrectly mixing drugs, dangerous drug interactions and incorrect dosing.

Those who suffer from illnesses and pain due to incorrect medication practices can hold the wrongdoer liable through medical malpractice claims. Victims of medication errors can often recover compensation for medical treatment cost, mental agony and pain and suffering.

Source: Pharmaceutical Commerce, “Medication errors from injectable drugs are a $2.7-5.1-billion problem for US hospitals,” Dec. 13, 2012