Pharmacy Misfill Cases
- September 21, 2011
- by John Uustal
When having a prescription filled at a pharmacy, most people take for granted that their pharmacist will dispense the correct medication; however, pharmacy misfills and errors are more common than you may realize. The National Patient Safety Foundation estimates that out of approximately 30 billion prescriptions filled by outpatient pharmacies every year in the U.S., there are about 30 million pharmacy errors or misfills. The effects of these pharmacy misfills range from minor inconvenience to the patient to permanent disability or wrongful death. With an increased emphasis on timely customer service, pharmacies are under pressure to fill prescriptions quickly, which often leads to devastating mistakes. Pharmacy misfills are a form of medical malpractice and as such, patients who have suffered injury or lost a loved one due to a pharmacy mistake in Fort Lauderdale or throughout the State of Florida may be eligible to receive compensation for their injuries and losses.
Florida Pharmacy Misfills
Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians have a duty to carefully read prescriptions and dispense the medication exactly as indicated. Many medications have similar names, so it is vital that pharmacists take the time to read physician instructions carefully when filling prescriptions. In addition, pharmacists must be careful to review their patient pharmacy records to prevent potentially harmful or deadly drug interactions. Failure to do so may result in a pharmacy misfill including:
- Dispensing the wrong medication
- Dispensing incorrect dosage – For example, dispensing 10 mg pills instead of 1 mg pills.
- Labeling prescription with incorrect use instructions – For example, indicating that a patient should take medication every two hours when the physician’s instructions indicate it is to be taken 2 times per day.
- Failure to label prescriptions with required warnings
- Drug contraindications – Filling a prescription for a medication that is known to have an adverse reaction to medications the patient is currently taken.
Unfortunately, pharmacy misfills are one of the most difficult types of medical malpractice to detect; the adverse reaction to incorrect medication or incorrect dosages may be misdiagnosed as another medical problem. This is one reason why it is important to hire a real trial attorney with comprehensive knowledge of pharmacology and the adverse affects that pharmacy misfills can cause.
Experienced Fort Lauderdale Pharmacy Misfill Attorneys
Kelley/Uustal has represented many clients who have suffered injuries due to Florida pharmacy misfills. One example of a Florida pharmacy misfill case the attorneys at Kelley/Uustal handled successfully involved a pharmacy misfill to a 90-year old Florida woman, Minnie Guider, which resulted in brain injury and several weeks in the hospital. The woman’s mail order pharmacy company, Intramed, Inc., made an error when dispensing her bladder medication, Oxybutynin. Instead, they dispensed Glyburide, a prescription medication for diabetics that causes significant reduction in blood sugar levels. This pharmacy misfill resulted in hypoglycemic episodes and neurological insult to our client. While the defense claimed that Ms. Guider’s injuries did not result from the pharmacy misfill, the jury awarded our client $1.95 million for her medical expenses and for her pain and suffering.
If you suspect you or someone you love was injured due to a pharmacy misfill or pharmacy error, contact a personal injury lawyer at Kelley/Uustal today. We will provide you with a free evaluation of your Florida pharmacy misfill case and help you pursue justice.