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Need to Know: Medication Errors

Each year in the United States, adverse drug events (ADEs)—harm resulting from medication use—cause more than one million visits to hospital emergency departments. Medication errors pose a serious public health issue.

Troubling Numbers

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

  • 82 percent of American adults take at least one medication.
    • 29 percent take five or more
  • ADEs result in 350,000 hospitalizations each year.
  • $3.5 billion is spent annually on excess medical costs from ADEs.
  • More than 40 percent of costs related to ambulatory (non-hospital) ADEs might be preventable.

What Causes Medication Errors?

pill bottle

Medication errors are a significant public health problem.

Medication errors can occur because of negligence. They can be made by any health care provider who prescribes, administers or provides medication to a patient. The most common causes are:

  • Poor communication between doctors
  • Drug names that sound alike
  • Medicines that look similar
  • Medical abbreviations

When Do Medical Errors Occur?

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration notes that medication errors can happen throughout the medication-use system, including:

  • When a drug is prescribed
  • When information is entered into a computer system
  • When a drug is being prepared or dispensed
  • When a drug is given to or taken by a patient

If you or a loved one have been injured because of a health care provider’s medication mistake, you need a lawyer with the experience, resources and ability to fight for you. Contact Elk & Elk today for a free consultation.

The Problem is Expected to Grow

The CDC expects the number of ADEs to increase due to:

  • The development of new medicines
  • The discovery of new uses for older medicines
  • An aging population
  • The growing use of medicines for disease treatment and prevention
  • An expansion of insurance coverage for prescription medicines

Reduce Your Risk

The CDC recommends that all adults:

  • Keep a list of their medicines
  • Follow directions
  • Ask questions
  • Keep up with any blood testing recommended by their doctor
  • Take all medicines only as directed

Our Experienced Ohio Medical Error Lawyers Can Help

If you or a loved one were a victim of a medication error, contact our Ohio medical error attorneys for a free, no-obligation consultation. We have over 50 years of experience fighting for people injured by medication errors. Our team will work tirelessly to get you the compensation you deserve.

Remember, because of deadlines, it is important to get started right away. Call us at 1-800-ELK-OHIO or use our online form.