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Pharmacy Errors

As Americans age, an increasing number of them are taking pharmaceutical drugs in order to maintain their health. Bartells, CVS, and Walgreens are both common businesses that occupy most corners in Seattle, Kirkland, Bellingham, and Olympia.

While with the majority of them there are no problems with the pharmacists or doctors who write prescriptions of people, on occasion there are mistakes that are made that lead to people being injured or sickened by the wrong medication. In the event this happens, you, the patient, have the right to bring a claim in order to make yourself whole after suffering damages.

Washington State Laws Regarding Pharmacy Errors

When a mistake is made involving a prescription, the most obvious person to blame may seem to be the pharmacist, and the majority of the time this is the case. However, there are instances when other individuals than pharmacists are responsible for the mistake involving the wrong prescription. Doctors, physician assistants, and nurse practitioners can also be the responsible party. Regardless of who issues the medication, there can be serious unintended consequences of taking a drug that either was not prescribed to you or that was over-prescribed to you. Sometimes mistakes are made, in fact, the overwhelming majority of the time what happened was a simple mistake, but that does not exclude the pharmacist, pharmacy, doctor, hospital, nurse, or physician assistant from being held legally responsible for their actions.

The most common problem a person faces is a bad reaction or an adverse reaction to a certain drug. There are also instances when there is a bad reaction to a drug. Sometimes the doctor will mean to write a prescription for one drug, get confused or forget, and write a prescription for a different drug. If this drug was not supposed to be written for you, you could have a terrible reaction to it and suffer anything from sickness to death. As you can imagine, not all drugs mix well together, and the drugs may not interact in a way that is best for you.

You may have a reaction that is adverse to you, especially if a drug that is prescribed to you is one that you are allergic to. For example, you may be allergic to certain kinds of medication for people who allergic to cats, but this drug that was wrongly prescribed to you may in fact be horrible for you and cause you a terrible reaction. You could easily end up in the ER with this kind of reaction.

There are other side effects as well with some drugs. We’ve all seen those commercials on TV where a certain drug is advertised but it comes with a million side-effects, some of them quite unpleasant. In this instance, the drug may have a terrible side-effect that does not agree with you, or that does not mix with well with a condition you already have.

If your healthcare professional, whether it is a doctor or pharmacist, prescribes the wrong drug, you may be deprived of the prescription drug you actually need. Without this drug, you may suffer serious consequences of not getting the drug you need to make you better. Again, the consequences of not getting the drug you need could be sickness or even death. The stakes are very high.

If it can be proven that the wrong medication was prescribed to you, then it is up to you discover who the responsible party was for this. The most obvious culprits are:

  • Your doctor
  • The doctor’s assistant
  • A nurse practitioner
  • A pharmacist

Again, it may be difficult or easy to determine which of these professionals caused your problems. When you are able to determine which of these professionals caused the injuries you suffered from them, you then have to decide who you are going to sue. If your doctor is the one who did not prescribe the correct medication, or prescribed the wrong medication, you have to decide whether you will include the hospital, clinic, or pharmacy in the lawsuit.

For purposes of an example, if it can be proven that your doctor prescribed the wrong medication to you and you suffered and adverse reaction, then you could sue your doctor and the hospital who employs him. This might make sense if the hospital failed to provide the appropriate training for the doctor. The hospital is responsible for the acts of their doctors, just as a pizza company would be responsible for the acts of its drivers while on the job. This legal principal is called “respondent superior” or vicarious liability.

This route might be the best course of action. The same principal would apply to a pharmacist who prescribes the wrong medication. The pharmacy could also be held responsible for your injuries, which would make it so that you should include the pharmacy in the lawsuit.

Common Pharmacy Error Injuries

If you have been injured because of a pharmacy error, you have the right to bring a claim against the pharmacy or hospital, along with the doctor or pharmacy, for your injuries. The most common injuries are:

  • Death
  • Allergic reactions
  • Swelling
  • Hives
  • Sickness

After suffering an adverse reaction to a certain drug, then it is best to seek medical care immediately to address your injuries. It is unlikely that your injuries are just going to resolve on their own. Rather, you will likely have to make sure you get the proper medical care you need to get better.

How The Jackman Law Firm can Help

If you have been injured by an adverse reaction to a drug, then you have the right to bring a claim against the party responsible for your injuries, whether that is a hospital or a pharmacy. The Jackman Law Firm has the resources to bring the appropriate resources and the requisite level of knowledge and skill to bring justice to you for what you have been through. The Jackman Law Firm can help you recover the following:

  • Money for medical bills
  • Money for lost wages
  • Money for pain and suffering
  • Money for out of pocket expenses
  • Money for your spouse

When you bring a claim against a doctor, pharmacist, hospital, or pharmacy, then most of the time an insurance company for one of these parties will come forward and provide a defense for one of these parties, if not at all of them. Insurance companies then hire a law firm to defend their client and these are not easy cases to win.

However, the Jackman Law Firm has the resources to successfully negotiate with an insurance company to ensure you win your case and receive the money you deserve for your injuries.

If you have questions regarding your claim, do not hesitate to contact The Jackman Law Firm for a free consultation to discuss how we can help you.

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