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Nursing Home Medication Errors

Malman Law. Premier Personal Injury Attorneys

Injury Attorney Steven J. Malman

Medication errors are a common occurrence in nursing homes and other skilled nursing facilities.

One in three nursing patients suffers from medication errors

A 2014 study published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services found that one in three nursing patients suffers from medication errors, and that at least 59 percent of these errors were preventable. More than half of all errors required the resident to be admitted to the hospital, resulting in hundreds of millions of dollars in medical costs.

Other studies have produced similar results. A 2010 study published in the American Journal of Geriatric Pharmacology called medication errors in nursing homes a “common occurrence,” while a third study reported that one out of every five doses of medication provided by nursing home staff involves a mistake.

Why Are There So Many Medication Errors?

As you would expect, nursing home caregivers are trained to avoid medication errors. Administering medications is a central aspect of their job, and it is one with potentially fatal consequences if they get it wrong. As a result, prior to administering medications, nursing home staff members should always:

  • Make sure they have the right patient.
  • Make sure they have the right medication.
  • Make sure they are administering the proper dosage.
  • Make sure they have the right form of medication (e.g., pill versus liquid).
  • Make sure they are administering the medication at the correct time to avoid interactions and side effects.

So, why do so many nursing home residents suffer from medication errors? For one, caregivers make mistakes. Whether due to lack of training or a failure to follow proper protocol, nurses and other staff members regularly overlook important steps and rush through processes, putting residents at risk.

Secondly, an alarming number of medication errors are intentional. Nursing home staff members have been known to improperly use medications to sedate residents and facilitate other forms of abuse.

Common Medication Errors in Nursing Homes

In performing the basic tasks outlined above, nursing home staff members also need to be sure to follow the resident’s doctor and the drug manufacturer recommendations. At Malman Law, we regularly see tragic cases involving medication errors such as:

Doctor and Pharmacist Medication Errors

Sometimes, medication errors occur before the medications make their way into a nursing home. In these cases, injured patients and their families may have grounds to file a medical malpractice claim against the prescribing physician or the pharmacist who supplied the dangerous drug. Some of these types of medication errors include:

Contact Malman Law about Your Illinois Medication Error Claim

With offices in downtown Chicago, Malman Law provides experienced legal representation for victims of medication errors in nursing homes throughout Illinois. Our attorneys have recovered millions of dollars in compensation for elderly nursing home residents and their families.

For more information about what to do if you suspect a medication error in a nursing home, please call us at (888) 307-2051 or contact us online for a free consultation.

Firm Awards & Recognitions

Steven Malman was selected to the list. The list is issued by the American Institute of Legal Counsel. A description of the selection methodology can be found at

  • Steven Malman was selected to the list. The list is issued by the National Academy of Personal Injury Attorneys. A description of the selection methodology can be found at

  • Steven Malman was selected to the list for 2018-2019.

  • Only the top 100 trial lawyers from each state or highly-populated regions of certain states who are actively practicing in civil plaintiff and/or criminal defense law are eligible for invitation. Invitees must demonstrate superior qualifications, leadership skills, and trial results as a legal professional. The selection process for this elite honor is based on a multi-phase process based upon objective and uniformly applied criteria which includes peer nominations combined with third party research.

    Prospective members of The NTL are carefully screened prior to receiving an invitation for membership.

  • Top Attorneys Diamond Member

  • Top Attorneys of North America 2019-2020

  • The American Institute of Trial Lawyers is an invitation only professional organization composed of premier trial attorneys from each state. These attorneys exemplify the very best qualities and qualifications of an attorney. Each attorney must meet stringent qualifications as a civil or criminal trial attorney. These attorneys practice in a variety of fields to help and promote the ethical and elite practice of law. Selection is based on a thorough multi phase process which includes peer nominations and third party research. Each member must be in good standing with their local compliance organization. Membership is extended to only a select few in each state and/or region.

  • As the founder of Steven J. Malman and Associates, P.C., Attorney Steven Malman has 21 years of experience handling personal injury, nursing home, medical malpractice, premises liability, construction and workers’ compensation cases. Mr. Malman is one of Chicago’s leading authorities on personal injury law and has taken a special interest in defending the elderly from neglect and abuse. He has personally handled over 10,000 cases successfully, and collected hundreds of millions dollars for his clients.

Client Review

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    - Cheryl Wagemann
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