New protocol from the Food and Drug Administration could reduce the number of medication injuries andprescription drug error lawsuitsdue to drug name confusion.
In 2006, a study called Preventing Medication Errors was released by the Institute of Medicine. The report found that drug naming, labeling, and packaging accounted for 33% of all known medication errors, including 30% of drug error fatalities. In response, the FDA rolled out several programs to cut back the potential for drug name errors prior to approval of the medication.
In order to assess how likely a medication name error would be in a real-life situation, the FDA asks hundreds of medical professionals to act as volunteers in medication role-playing scenarios. In these simulations, doctors and nurses treat potential new medications and dosages as they would in the course of their jobs. Then FDA researchers track errors. These scenarios alone have resulted in the rejection of one-third of proposed drug names because they look or sound too similar to a medication that is already on the market.
After a medication has been approved, the FDA continues to track errors associated with name confusion. When a report is issued to the FDA citing a drug name problem, the FDA releases information to health professionals, pharmacists and the public to educate them about the potential error.
As a last resort, the FDA also can recommend to a pharmaceutical company that the name of its medication be changed to avoid potential prescription drug injury.
If you have questions about your medication injury, the attorneys at Kennedy Hodges can help. Call today at 888-526-7616 for a free case consultation.