Dedicated Chicago Attorneys Fighting for Victims of Nursing Home Medication Errors
The distribution of medication at a nursing home is one of the most important procedures of the day. With all of the possible allergic reactions or overdose scenarios, one can imagine why responsible nursing homes pay extra close attention when disseminating patient medication. But, not all nursing homes and nursing home employees pay the same amount of close attention.
In fact, studies cited by the Nursing Home Abuse Guide suggest that as much as 37 percent of medical errors (which are experienced by roughly one in every five nursing home residents) involved medication errors. While these errors may seem like simple mistakes, they can lead to devastating health risks. The Guide also determines that there are four major categories among medication errors:
- Knowledge Based Errors – For example, when a staff member is unaware of a patient’s medication allergy.
- Rule Based Errors – For example, when a nurse or staff member confuses or disregards a nursing home medication regulation or standard best practices regarding medication (due to lack of training, or simply negligence).
- Action Based Errors – For example, when a staff member “slips” up in grabbing the wrong medication container, recording the wrong medication on the patient log, or misreading the prescription.
- Memory Based Errors – For example, when a nurse or physician issues medication, but forgets to record it properly. This error could then result in another staff member also issuing medication.
While it is clear that not all of these types of medication errors involve malicious intent on the part of the nursing home staff, most do involve some degree of negligence, under-training, over-working, or just generally not paying close enough attention to one’s duties. Often, these mistakes can be indicative of larger administrative, personnel, or training concerns at the nursing home.
Health care professionals are responsible for the lives of these patients, and they are accountable for any mistake under their care. Listed below is further information pertaining to the causes, types, and consequences of medication errors in nursing homes.
Causes of Nursing Home Medication Errors
Communication errors are common and can result in medication errors among patients (refer to the four types of medication errors mentioned above). Depending on the size of the nursing home, there could be tens or hundreds of prescriptions to distribute, so confusing one name with someone else is always a possibility. But, in this scenario, it is not just a simple mistake; it could result in serious injury and death. If this does happen to you or a loved one, contact a nursing home abuse lawyer in Aurora. An expert attorney will use his or her legal resources to hold the staff member and nursing home accountable.
Types of Medication Errors in Nursing Homes
Elder care attorneys have represented clients who suffered from a variety of medication errors, including missed doses, overdoses/under-doses, medicating the wrong patient, and medicating with the wrong product. In reality, there are several types of medication errors that can occur; but, they all have negative effects and must be addressed appropriately. During your consultation with an Aurora nursing home abuse lawyer, he or she can speak with you about the type of medication error that occurred, and how best to hold the responsible medical professional accountable for the error.
Consequences of Medication Errors in Nursing Homes
The most common consequences of medication errors witnessed by nursing home abuse lawyers in Aurora include infections, new illnesses, death, and a worsening of the victims’ current medical situation. And, if the patient is allergic to a medication that he or she was given by accident, the timetable for survival is drastically reduced. Be sure to contact an elder care attorney from the moment when you suspect medication errors may have happened to your loved one; you could save your loved one’s life with a timely response.
Contact the Experts at Malman Law
Aurora nursing home abuse lawyers have seen a wide variety of cases – varying from the wrong amount of medication to giving a patient someone else’s medication. Even if you or a loved one did not suffer any major health complications, it is still important to seek legal assistance right away. If, on the other hand, severe health problems were suffered as a result of a medication error, it is imperative to contact the team at Malman Law immediately. We offer the following to all of our clients:
Zero Fee Guarantee – If we cannot secure a compensation settlement in your personal injury or wrongful death claim, then you won’t have to pay any legal fees.
Successful Results – We are often able to secure compensation for our clients – even securing six, seven, and eight-figure settlements. Since the costs of dealing with nursing homes’ mistakes add up financially, a very large settlement will often be necessary to compensate for medication errors.
No-Obligation Consultations – We offer free initial consultations (wherein we can even come to you if you can’t travel to our offices) and are available for our clients 24/7.
Call our offices or contact us online today. We will begin investigating the medication error immediately to determine, among other things: (i) who was at fault, (ii) how the error took place, (iii) if this is a recurring problem at that particular facility, and (iv) what is the best way to secure rightful compensation. We are ready to fight for you.