Avoiding Pharmaceutical Errors
When you fill your prescription, you trust that the pharmacist or pharmacy technician has extensive knowledge of each drug and is taking adequate steps to ensure that you get the right medication in the correct dosage. Unfortunately, even the most experienced pharmacists can make mistakes– with serious consequences. A medication error can result in serious illness, injury, or even death to the person taking the drug.
There are over 30 million pharmacy errors reported each year in the United States. To reduce your risk of taking the wrong medication:
- Understand your medicines. Ask your doctor to confirm the name of your drug and the proper dosage, and write down this information.
- After picking up your prescription, compare your label and dosage instructions to those provided by your doctor.
- Before taking the medication for the first time, research the drug. Find a picture to determine how the pill should look and any identifying information printed on the pill.
- Learn about generic brands and how these pills may look different from name brand pills. Understand the side effects of generic medications as well as differences in dosage.
- When picking up refills, compare your new pills to any remaining pills from your previous bottle. The pills should look identical and contain the same identifying information.
- Return to the pharmacy or call your doctor if you are at all unsure about the type of medication you have received or have any questions about your dosage.
Taking these added precautions may seem time-consuming and unnecessary, but they could, in fact, save your life.
If you or a loved one has suffered because of a pharmacy error, contact the Iowa medical malpractice attorneys of LaMarca Law Group, P.C. today at 877-327-2600.