While medications are used to heal, they also have the potential to cause harm if not properly administered. Unfortunately, medication errors are common both in general practice and in hospitals. If you or someone close to you has been adversely affected by a medication error, you need to speak to a skilled Miami medical malpractice attorney who can assess the merits of your case. At the Law Offices of Robert Dixon, you can rest assured that we are dedicated to examining your case and determining your legal rights and options.
A recent report published in the journal The Consultant Pharmacist highlights the importance of a comprehensive medication review after a patient was prescribed the wrong medication for over 10 years. The case involved a 69-year-old patient with paranoid schizophrenia who was brought to the emergency room following violent behavior against staff at the nursing home facility where he lived. At that time, a transcription error had occurred – a prescription for one drug was deleted, and another drug was added. During a subsequent hospitalization, the error was not discovered, but instead the dose of the wrong medication was increased.
Unfortunately, this story is not unique. Since the year 2000, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has received more than 95,000 reports of medication errors throughout the country. The FDA defines a medication error as “any preventable event that may cause or lead to inappropriate medication use or patient harm while the medication is in the control of the healthcare professional, patient, or consumer.” Medication errors can happen in a number of ways, including when the wrong medication was prescribed or given, the wrong dosage was given, the wrong directions for use were provided, or a mix of medication was administered that is dangerous when combined.
If you’ve been injured by a medication error, you will likely be able to file a medical malpractice claim against the negligent party. It is important to note that not all medical mistakes constitute medical malpractice. Instead, medical malpractice takes place when a health care provider’s mistake causes injuries or death to a patient. In order to establish medical malpractice, you must show your injury was a result of the health care provider’s failing to adhere to the expected standard of care. In Florida, the standard of care is defined as the level of care, skill, and treatment that a reasonably prudent health care provider in the same specialty would have used in the same or similar circumstances.
Like every other state, Florida has a specific time frame in which a medical malpractice claim must be filed, known as the statute of limitations. Under state law, a person has two years from when he or she knew or should have known that the injury occurred to file a medical malpractice lawsuit in civil court. There are some limited exceptions to this rule. Generally, however, failing to file within this time frame could mean losing your legal right to seek compensation from the at-fault party altogether.
If you or a loved one has suffered an injury due to a medication error of any kind, it is imperative to speak to a seasoned Miami medical negligence attorney who can protect your rights. We will investigate your case and help you determine the compensation you are rightfully entitled to receive. At the Law Offices of Robert Dixon, we understand the stress and pain that a medication error can cause, which is why we will handle your case with the utmost compassion. To speak to us in more detail about your case, do not hesitate to call us at 1-877-499-HURT (4878) or contact us online today.
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Preponderance of the Evidence Standard in Florida Civil Cases, South Florida Injury Lawyer Blawg, November 2, 2017