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Causes, prevention and reporting medication errors in California

On Behalf of | Aug 8, 2022 | Medication Errors

If you or someone you love takes medication in California, it’s important to be aware of the potential for medication errors. These errors can occur for a variety of reasons and can have serious consequences.

Medication errors in California

Medication errors are preventable events that can make or result in a patient using the wrong drugs or the right drug inappropriately. For example, when a doctor prescribes an overdose of the medicine that you need for your condition.

Other common causes include:

  1. Improper use of a medication
  2. Confusing two patients who have similar names
  3. Receiving a medication too late or too early
  4. Failure to follow clinical advice
  5. Failure to perform some parts of the medication regimen

Preventing medication errors

Both healthcare professionals and their patients are responsible for preventing medication errors. As a patient, you can do the following:

  • Make sure that you know the name of the medication, the dosage, how often to take it, and what time of day to take it.
  • Use one pharmacy for all your prescriptions so that the pharmacist can keep track of everything you’re taking.
  • Ask your doctor or pharmacist questions about things you don’t understand instead of hoping for the best.
  • Keep a list of all medications (including over-the-counter drugs and supplements) that you’re taking, and show this list to your doctor or pharmacist every time you get a new medication.

Actions you can take if the medication error resulted from a healthcare practitioner’s negligence

In California, you can file a malpractice claim if you or your loved one has been injured due to a medical practitioner’s negligence. In your suit, you will have to convince the court that the hospital or healthcare practitioner that owed you a duty of care was negligent, their negligent behavior resulted in your injury and you have suffered damages as a result.

Medication errors can have severe consequences for patients, including illness, injury, and even death. Therefore, it is better to prevent it from occurring than to deal with its consequences.