A study done by the American Society of Hospital Pharmacists found that there were a number of factors that contributed to these mistakes. By paying close attention to common causes, the pharmacist and staff can take steps to minimize risks and potentially eliminate many harmful mistakes in the future.
In order to prevent harmful medication errors, pharmacists should be aware of the following risk factors:
1. Day shifts. There are higher error rates during daytime work shifts.
- Staff training. Poorly trained or inexperienced staff was a common problem.
- Multiple medications. The more medications a patient takes, the greater the chance of error.
- Distractions. Environmental factors such as lighting, noise, and frequent interruptions affect the error rate.
- Staff workload. Fatigue and multi-tasking can cause staff members to make mistakes.
- Communication problems. Miscommunication or lack of dialogue between staff and health-care providers contributed to patient harm.
- Improper drug storage was found to cause harmful side effects.
- Drug packaging. Confusing product names, package information or labeling may lead to dosage mistakes.
- Poor handwriting from doctors and pharmacists is a common source of error.
- Verbal orders. Spoken orders should be avoided to prevent “sound-alike” errors.
As trusted pharmacy error injury lawyers, we realize that improvements in the system are necessary, but they won’t happen overnight. Victims continue to suffer prescription error side effects every day, losing income and gaining expensive medical bills.
To get a free consultation on your drug injury case, call Kennedy Hodges today at 888-526-7616, or click the link above to receive a FREE copy of our report, How to Make Pharmacies Pay for Injuries Caused by Medication Errors.