Medication errors are one of the most common preventable errors within medical settings. With so many people involved in prescribing, preparing, and administrating more than 10,000 prescription medications in the United States, it is no wonder these errors are so common. However, being common does not mean that drug errors are acceptable or that medical personnel should become complacent to them.

An accomplished Schenectady medication error lawyer could obtain monetary compensation for patients who have fallen victim to a medication error. By determining how the drug error happened, you and your experienced medical malpractice attorney could potentially hold the responsible party liable for their actions.

How Medication Errors Occur

From the prescribing of a medication to the patient taking the medication, there are several steps in the dispensing process where an error can take place. Accordingly, there are several ways in which a Schenectady medication error attorney could help an injured patient file suit for their damages, depending on the circumstances that brought about their injury.

Ordering

The doctor or another clinician with prescriptive authority selects the appropriate type of medication for a patient, as well as the ideal dose, how often the patient should take it, and for how long. The right dose can depend on the age, size, and specific medical needs of the patient.

Transcribing

The prescription order is transferred in some manner from the prescriber to the pharmacist or pharmacy technician. This can be done via paper prescription or electronically. In rare cases, it can be done verbally.

Dispensing

Once the pharmacist has the order, they should cross-check drug interactions and allergies for the patient the doctor prescribed it for. The pharmacist also serves as a second layer of safety to double-check that the clinician prescribed the right dose.

Administration

In a hospital or other clinical setting such as a nursing home, a registered nurse or other certified staff would administer medication to residents. The person administering the drug in such a setting should ensure they are following the five rights of medication administration: right patient, right medication, right dose, right time, and right route.

At home, each individual patient must ensure that they are taking the medication as prescribed. If they do not, they may be found at fault or partially at fault for their own injuries related to a medication error.

When to File a Medication Error Claim

Some patients put off pursuing a claim after they were negatively impacted by a medication error. They may be unsure that they have a valid claim, think they have plenty of time to investigate their legal options, or may simply be focused on their own health. Whatever the reason, procrastination on getting in touch with a medication error lawyer in Schenectady may preclude an injured patient from getting the compensation they deserve.

Plaintiffs and their attorneys in New York State have two years and six months to file a civil claim, as per New York Civil Practice Law & Rules §214-a. While this may seem unfair to some, this deadline—also known as the statute of limitations—helps to keep each case focused on credible and recent information. Patients who believe they were harmed by a medication error should contact a dedicated attorney as soon as possible to preserve their legal rights.

Connect with a Schenectady Medication Error Attorney

Modern medications have saved numerous lives. However, when a medication error occurs, they can also do the opposite and cause unneeded pain and suffering. A case evaluation with a seasoned attorney may be able to help you determine if you have a valid medication error case that entitled you to compensation. To learn more about your legal options, set up a consultation with a qualified Schenectady medication error lawyer today.