Pharmacists play a critical role in the health care field, ensuring that medications are properly made, identifying potentially dangerous drug interactions, as well as keeping track of a patient’s medical records. However, according to the Food and Drug Administration, over 1.3 million people are injured each year due to medication mistakes committed by pharmacists.
If you have suffered an injury because of a pharmacist’s negligence in West Palm Beach, contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney. A West Palm Beach pharmacist negligence lawyer can help protect your rights and ensure you receive the proper care and compensation following a pharmacist error.
Pharmacists undergo extensive education and training to understand the complexities of modern medications. However, despite all of the training a pharmacist will undergo, pharmacists make medication errors every day. The National Coordinating Council for Medication Error Reporting and Prevention (NCCMERP) defines a medication error as:
[A]ny preventable event that may cause or lead to inappropriate medication use or patient harm while the medication is in the control of the health care professional, patient, or consumer. Such events may be related to professional practice, health care products, procedures, and systems.
This can include:
- Order communication
- Product labeling
The Center for Disease Control estimates that 82 percent of Americans take at least one prescription medication and 29 percent take five or more. With so many people using these medications, especially those combining several at one time, there is a high risk of danger when these drugs are not given in the correct dosage, without proper instruction or are not the prescribed drug at all.
Common Pharmacy Errors
Modern medicines are becoming increasingly stronger and effective at treating medical conditions, however, when medications are taken together they may cause dangerous reactions to occur in the body.
A pharmacist has a duty to check a patient’s medical history and inquire as to all the medications a patient is taking in order to identify and prevent potentially dangerous drug interactions. Some of the most common pharmacy negligence cases are a result of:
- Dispensing the wrong medication
- Dispensing medication in the wrong dosage
- Confusing drugs that look alike or have similar sounding names
- Failure to protect against harmful drug interactions
- Failure to provide adequate counseling
- Failure to identify drug allergies
It can be difficult to determine what has caused a specific injury. A patient often only knows that they have had a serious reaction. In many cases, patients only get information when they work with a personal injury attorney in Tamarac or their community to get answers.
Types of Recovery
The injuries from a pharmaceutical error can be severe and even result in death. Damages in any pharmacy negligence case in West Palm Beach will depend on the unique factors and circumstances of a person’s case, and proving these damages can be incredibly difficult.
However, working closely with a West Palm Beach pharmacy negligence lawyer can improve a person’s chances of recovering from the injuries they have sustained. A West Palm Beach pharmacy negligence lawyer can help recover:
- Medical Bills
- Future Costs of Medical Care
- Lost Income
- Diminished Future Earning Capacity
- Loss of Enjoyment of Life
- Pain and Suffering
Florida currently limits the amount of compensation a person can receive in a medical malpractice case for noneconomic damages such as pain and suffering. However, it is important to understand the unique challenges that a medical malpractice case for a pharmacist errors brings, and how these monetary caps can affect their case.
Time Limits to File a Pharmacy Negligence Case
Pharmacists are responsible for properly dispensing powerful medications and drugs. However, when a pharmacist or pharmacy makes a negligent error, victims have the right to take legal action to recover for their injuries. However, it is important that a person who has suffered because of a pharmacist’s negligence understand that they only have a limited amount of time to file a lawsuit.
The Florida Statute of Limitations for medical malpractice is two years, which means that a person has two years from the date they suffered an injury to file a lawsuit against a pharmacist.
It is important to consider this time limit if a person is considering filing a lawsuit against their doctor or pharmacist. While there are certain exceptions that a West Palm Beach pharmacist negligence lawyer may be able to employ in a case, generally waiting past the statute of limitations will mean a patient cannot bring their case to court.
Contacting an Attorney
If you or a loved one has suffered an injury because of pharmacy negligence, contact a West Palm Beach medical malpractice lawyer today. A pharmacy negligence lawyer can help gather evidence for your case, work with medical experts, and help you bring a lawsuit to recover compensation for your injuries.