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Is it possible to hold a pharmacy liable for a medication error that causes injuries?

It’s not unusual for even a relatively healthy American to be taking multiple prescription medications on a regular basis. If you’re taking a drug to treat or manage a medical or mental health condition, you depend on your pharmacy and the professionals there to dispense it correctly.

Physicians have a responsibility to prescribe appropriate doses of necessary medications. However, some courts have held pharmacists liable for making or not catching errors that have harmed patients. A pharmacist can be the last line of defense for patients in an overburdened health care system where a mistyped number can mean the difference between life and death.

Errors, errors, everywhere…

Consider the fact that your prescription medications likely come with pages of information. These are required in order to warn patients of potential side effects and harmful interactions with other medications and supplements. While this “duty to warn” has largely been the responsibility of doctors and drug companies, pharmacists have, in some cases, been held liable for not warning patients of a potential interaction. A pharmacist might be more likely to have liability if a patient specifically sought information from them or they neglected to provide the necessary information with the prescription.

There’s no doubt that pharmacists are under more stress than ever. Pharmacists at large chain pharmacies in a particular report that they are understaffed. While the fact that understaffing can lead to errors, this is an explanation, not an excuse, if an error harms or kills someone.

It’s always wise to verify that you have the medication that’s been prescribed before taking it (or giving it to a child or other loved one). Fortunately, prescription labels provide a wealth of information. It’s important to look – particularly if this is a new medication. For example.

  • Confirm that the correct patient name is on the label.
  • Make sure the medication in the container is what’s described on the label.
  • If it’s generic, make sure the name-brand medication is what your doctor prescribed.
  • Be sure the dosage is what your doctor prescribed.

Of course, people can’t always be expected to know whether they received the correct medication and/or dosage. If you or a loved one has been harmed or worse by a dispensing or other error made by a pharmacist, proving that they neglected their responsibility can be a complicated process. That’s why it’s crucial to make sure that you get legal guidance from someone who has experience in these types of cases as you seek justice and compensation.