Pharmacy Errors – Dispensing the Wrong Medication

Pharmacy Errors Medical Claims Lawyer

Medication errors are more common than people think, and they can occur at any pharmacy or hospital.

Serious, and oftentimes fatal consequences, can result when a patient takes the incorrect medication. Receiving the wrong medication not only deprives you or your child of the benefits of the correct medication, the incorrect medication is oftentimes harmful in and of itself.

Taking the wrong medication can immediately threaten the life and safety of you, or your child or jeopardize your child’s future health and well-being. Medication errors are more common than people think, and they can occur at any pharmacy or hospital.

Poor quality control measures and dispensing systems are to blame for many medication errors.

Medical providers need to implement adequate polices and procedures to ensure patients receive the correct medication, correct dosage, and correct instructions for taking their medications as directed by the prescribing physician. Implementing and adhering to safety policies and procedures costs businesses money, and hospitals, urgent care facilities and pharmacies are businesses. Most businesses prioritize profit first, and, unfortunately, companies with a bottom-dollar line of thinking are quick to take cost-cutting measures in exchange for higher profits. Most times the savings from cost-cutting measures surpasses the costs of any potential lawsuit.

Understaffing, Overworked, Untrained Pharmacy Personnel Puts Patients and Consumers at Risk

Staffing is one the biggest costs of any business and some companies seek to employ the fewest number of staff members possible. They also hire less qualified employees that don’t demand high salaries. Hiring fewer employees and less qualified employees in an attempt maintain profitability leads to more pharmacy errors. A pharmacy with this business model is asking less qualified staff to take on too much responsibility in order to makeup for the staffing shortage. Overworked employees with too much responsibilities make mistakes.


Free Legal Consultation Personal Injury Lawyers

If you or a loved one has been hurt due to a medication error caused by pharmacy negligence then call our injury attorneys today. We will schedule a free consultation where we will go over all the facts of the case and layout all your legal options. This service is provided for free as we only get paid if you get paid.


Receiving The Wrong Medication Accounts for More Than 40% of Prescription Errors

Medication errors that result in pharmacies dispensing the wrong medication occur when your doctor has prescribed you the right medication, but the pharmacist or pharmacy technician fills the prescription with the wrong drug.

According to a 2016 report from the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP), the most common medication error committed by pharmacies in 2016 dealt with dispensing the incorrect medication. A 2013 study conducted in part by Healthcare Providers Service Organization (HPSO) titled 2013 Pharmacist Liability: A Ten-Year Analysis, found that most pharmacy errors involving patients receiving the wrong drug resulted in 43.8% of all the pharmacy injury claims paid over a 10 year period.

The ISMP report concluded that most medication dispensing errors involved the following class of drugs:

  • Opioid Pain Killers – 39% of the cases involving opioid drugs dealt with dispensing wrong drug.
  • Antipsychotic Medications – 32% of the cases involving antipsychotics dealt with dispensing the wrong drug.
  • Antibiotics – 44% of the cases involving antibiotics dealt with dispensing the wrong drug.
  • Insulin – 43% of the cases involving insulin dealt with dispensing the wrong drug.

The report went on to state that prescription dispensing errors involving insulin resulted in patient harm in 31% of the time. Insulin medication errors resulted in the greatest number of cases involving actual harm or injuries, followed by opioid narcotic medication errors which resulted in harm or injury in 11% of all cases.

Causes of Medication Errors

There are many reasons medication errors involving dispensing the wrong drug can and do occur.  Pharmacies and prescription medication manufacturers work in a volume business. Profits increase when more prescriptions are filled and sold. Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians are under great pressure to work faster, especially when there is a long line of patients lining up to get their medications. Other times, a patient is misidentified as another family member that shares the same name.

One common medication error involves filling the prescription with a wrong drug that has a similar name as the correct drug.  HPSO’s ten year study concluded that prescriptions for clonidine resulted in the most pharmacy errors. The drugs klonopin, clonazepam were often given instead of clonidine. Other similar sound medications that can be mistake for another include clomipramine and clomiphene, prednisone instead of primidone or prednisolone, Tegretol instead of Trental or Toprol, hydralazine for hydroxyzine.

Prescription Medication Error Personal Injury and Medical Malpractice Attorneys

Initial Consultations Are Always Free – No Fee Unless We Recover For You

Our personal injury accident lawyers have years of experience bringing medical malpractice claims on behalf of clients that were injured due to no fault of their own.  If you or a loved one experienced a serious medication injury or prescription overdose injury due to pharmacy negligence call our attorneys today to schedule a free consultation to find out if you are entitled to compensation for your injuries.

It is important to keep all prescription bottles, pills, store receipts, and pharmacy paperwork following a medication injury. We will need this information to build a case against the pharmacy and get you fair compensation for your medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering.

No matter where you are located, we are just a phone call away. Call our law offices today to schedule a free no-obligation case review and consultation at (508) 588-0422 or click the link below to use our Free Case Evaluation Form.

Medication Errors Personal Injury Attorneys

We offer a free, no-obligation legal consultation to help you understand your rights and the value of your case.

Hospital and Pharmacy Prescription Medication Errors – Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury Attorneys


Our knowledgeable and experienced Greater Boston accident claims and personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Gerald J. Noonan are available to assist clients throughout all of Southeast Massachusetts, including but not limited to Plymouth County including Brockton, Plymouth, Bridgewater, Marshfield, Hingham, Duxbury, Wareham, Abington, Rockland, Whitman, Hanson, Holbrook, Middleborough; Norfolk County including Quincy, Stoughton, Dedham, Weymouth, Braintree, Avon, Holbrook, Randolph, Canton, Sharon, Brookline, Franklin; Bristol County including New Bedford, Fall River, Taunton, Attleboro, Mansfield, Westport, Dartmouth, Easton, Raynham, Lakeville, Norton; Cape Cod, Hyannis, Falmouth, Barnstable and the Greater Boston area including Cambridge, Somerville, Medford, Everett, Lawrence, Lynn, Revere, Dorchester, Roxbury.