Medication Errors in Nursing Homes

Champaign Lawyers Representing Victims of Medication Errors in Nursing Homes

Elderly nursing home residents depend on medication to stay healthy, making the distribution of medications a top priority in these facilities. Many different injuries and ailments can result when residents do not receive the medication they need, or receive the wrong medication or dosage by mistake. Nursing home residents may be allergic to certain medications, and others may resist taking the medications they need. A resident might suffer an overdose when the staff administers too high a dose, and this may have fatal consequences. Skilled nursing facilities pay extra attention when distributing medication because it is their duty to ensure that negligence on the part of their staff does not result in injury to their residents.

Unfortunately, not all nursing home employees are careful when it comes to dispensing medication. Some act with unimaginable carelessness that puts the life of the residents in danger. If your loved one is a victim of a medication error, you have the legal right to file a personal injury claim against the nursing home. The experienced attorneys of Patel Law, P.C. can help you through this process to ensure you and your family can pursue the compensation you deserve.

Medication Errors in Nursing Homes

Research published in the Nursing Home Abuse Guide shows that 37% of medical errors experienced in nursing homes are medication errors. Some of these errors may seem to be minor but may lead to catastrophic consequences. The guide outlines four main categories of medication errors, including:

  • Memory-based errors: This is a case in which a physician or a nurse issues medication but fails to record it. If this mistake occurs, another physician or nurse may issue the medication again shortly afterward, leading to an overdose.
  • Action-based errors: This error occurs when the nurse or physician grabs the wrong medicine, issues it, and records it as if it is the right medication. This will mean the patient will miss the required dose (underdose) and take different medicine that was not prescribed for his condition.
  • Rule-based errors: This error occurs when the physician disregards or confuses a nursing facility or standard medication regulation because of negligence or lack of training.
  • Knowledge-based errors: Knowledge-based errors occur when the nurse or physician does not know the resident’s allergy. This mistake can result in serious allergic reactions.

As you can see, not all these errors are intentional or malicious on the part of the physician or the nurse. However, nearly all of them portray some level of over-working, under-training, negligence, or a general lack of care. There is no excuse for a medication error that endangers the life of a vulnerable elderly nursing home resident in Champaign. If your loved one has faced any of the above situations, call Patel Law, P.C. lawyers. We will move with speed to remedy the situation through legal action.

In many cases, a medication mistake could just be the tip of the iceberg. There could be a lot of negligence or even abuse going on in the nursing home.

The types of medication errors include:

  • Using the wrong medicine
  • Medicating the wrong resident
  • Overdoses/under-doses
  • Missed doses

What Causes Medication Errors in Nursing Homes?

Medication errors can be intentional or accidental. If intentional, then the nursing home staff could be using such mistakes to punish the residents for one reason or the other. Accidental errors can result from poor record-keeping, poor communication among employees, poor labeling of containers, and more.

Some medication errors also occur because of a lack of training on the part of the nursing home staff. Whatever the reason/cause of medication error, legal action is an effective and viable remedy. Nursing home staff negligence can cause serious injuries or death for residents. If your loved one has been the victim of a medication error, contact a medical abuse attorney to help hold the nursing facility or a particular employee accountable.

Ramifications of Medication Mistakes in Nursing Facilities

The most common problems associated with medication mistakes include worsening of the resident’s health, new illnesses, serious allergic reactions, serious side effects, and even death. When a case of medication error is discovered, it needs to be addressed as soon as possible. Any delay can lead to death. If a nursing home is reluctant to take action, it is better to report the case to the relevant authorities and also contact an experienced attorney.

Patel Law, P.C. can Help

At Patel Law, P.C., we have handled many cases of medication errors in Champaign nursing homes. That is why we are well-equipped to handle your case. We will carry out an independent investigation to get to the root of the matter and hold the at-fault parties accountable. We will fight for you and your loved one to receive the compensation you deserve for the damages resulting from any nursing home medication error.

Call or Contact Our Office Now

Cases of medical negligence need to be handled as quickly as possible. Personal injury claims must be filed within the statute of limitations, or you may lose your ability to pursue compensation. If you have a loved one who was a victim of medical negligence, contact or call us right away. We will send our lawyers out to assess the situation and set the legal process in motion.