Whether your child is in the hospital for a life-changing procedure or stitches after a fall, there is always some risk to his or her health. Unfortunately, for some patients at Seattle Children's Hospital in Washington, those risks took the form of pediatric medication mistakes--three of which had fatal consequences.
The first incident occurred in March 2003. A 12-year-old developmentally disabled boy underwent a surgical procedure on his feet so he could learn to walk. Although the surgery went as expected, Stuart Blankenship was given an incorrect dose of codeine while he was in recovery. The overdose of painkiller led to Stuart’s death.
Stuart's brother stated that "[Stuart] was administered a painkiller, and it was an incorrect dose...There was no monitoring, so these two combined may have been what done it."
Six years later, an autistic teen from Kent was prescribed a fatal dose of Fentanyl at Seattle Children's after undergoing dental surgery. He died shortly after he was released from the hospital, and his family filed a child medication error lawsuit against Seattle Children’s. As part of the settlement, the hospital admitted fault for the tragedy and said they would change how high-risk medications such as Fentanyl are used.
But in September 2010, the error happened again: 8-month-old Kaia Autner died from an overdose of calcium chloride.
Why are children suffering so many overdoses in hospitals?
- Dosage calculation mistakes. Nurses may “eyeball” a child’s dosage of adult medication rather than take the time to administer an approved dose.
- Lack of proper monitoring. Children are often left alone after surgery--sometimes for hours.
- Wrong medication. In some cases, children are given a look-alike or sound-alike medication that has a drastically different effect than the one they were prescribed.
If your child suffered a medication overdose in a hospital, we can help you hold the staff members accountable for their mistake, getting the justice you deserve and the settlement you need.
Call Kennedy Hodges today at (888) 526-7616 to start your FREE consultation. For more FREE legal information, click the link at the top of the page to receive a copy of our special report, How to Make Pharmacies Pay for Injuries Caused by Medication Errors.