Medication Errors Involving Administration of an Improper Dose
When people are under medical care, they are often prescribed medication to assist with their recovery. While medications are supposed to help, they can actually cause harm to a patient if they are not administered properly. In a hospital setting, medication errors involving administration of an improper dose are more common than most would think.
Medication errors can result in a wide range of negative consequences, including serious health complications. When a wrong dosage medication error leads to physical and financial damages, medical malpractice lawyer Lynn C. Harris can assist victims in the Salt Lake City, UT, and Provo, UT, area in pursuing financial compensation for their losses.
How Do Improper Dosage Medication Errors Occur?
Medical workers hold a patient’s health and well being in their hands, so they are held to a high professional standard. Unfortunately, despite the seriousness of their responsibilities, it is not unusual for healthcare providers to make errors. Many of these errors pertain to prescription medication.
In a hospital or ambulatory setting, improper dosage medication errors occur far more often than they should. Improper dosages may involve administering too much or too little medication, both of which can be harmful to the patient. If even a single number or decimal point is misread, patients can receive 10 to 100 times more, or less, medication than intended. There are many factors that can lead to these types of errors, including:
- Transposing or missing a number or decimal point when reading medication instructions
- Rushing to administer the medication without double checking the dosage
- Illegible doctor handwriting
- Prescribing the wrong dosage
- Typing the wrong prescription order into an automated system
- Misreading the dosage marked on the medication
Possible Consequences of Medication Errors
Prescription medications are stronger than over-the-counter drugs, so administration of the wrong dosage can have severe consequences. If too little medication is administered, patients may experience pain, prolonged illness, infection, or delayed recovery. When too much medication is administered, patients may suffer from:
- Allergic reactions
- Organ damage
- Heart failure
Do I Have a Medical Malpractice Claim?
Medical professionals will make mistakes, but not all are grounds for a medical malpractice lawsuit. To prove medical malpractice, these factors must be met:
- A doctor-patient relationship existed
- The doctor was negligent in their care, or failed to meet the accepted standard of care
- Neglect was the direct cause of illness or injuries
- The patient suffered damages as the result of the illness or injury
Establishing medical neglect is often the key point of a medical malpractice claim. To prove that neglect caused a medication error, attorney Harris must be able to demonstrate that the mistake was unreasonable, or one that would not be made by a similarly trained medical professional in the same situation. Our legal team works alongside medical experts to gather the evidence needed to prove medical malpractice so that our Salt Lake City clients can be compensated for their losses.
If you or a loved one has suffered damages related to a medication error, lawyer Lynn C. Harris can help you determine whether you have grounds to file a medical malpractice claim. To discuss your case with our legal team, send us a message online or call (801) 375-9801 and schedule a consultation at your earliest convenience.