You thought you were keeping your child safe by bringing him to the hospital. He was having trouble breathing, and you took him to the ER without a second thought—doing everything you were supposed to do as a concerned and responsible parent.
But when the medical staff is not as attentive as you are, they can make dangerous—even fatal—hospital medication mistakes.
In a recent UK study, researchers found 139 medication errors in a single children’s hospital in only six weeks. While the US numbers vary, it’s not impossible that the amount of errors is similar—and that any amount of drug mistakes in children is too many.
Here are a few ways to keep your child safe during a trip to the hospital:
- Be prepared. Keep an updated file with your child’s medications information and bring it with you to any appointments and ER visits.
- Speak up. If a doctor orders a treatment for your child, always ask why it is necessary and what it will do to help. If you don’t understand what they’re saying, make them explain it in a way that both you and your child can understand.
- Keep it clean. It may seem rude, but if you don’t see a staff member wash his hands before touching your child, always remind him. Hand washing is the most effective way to reduce infection.
- Read the scrip. Always verify your child’s prescription with the doctor, the pharmacist, and once more before administering. If you think the dosage or frequency is incorrect, call your pediatrician immediately.
- Follow up. If you’re seeing someone other than your regular doctor, ask questions about follow-up care. Always make an appointment with your own pediatrician after an unscheduled hospital visit.
- Get help. If you think your pharmacist made a prescription mistake, get advice from an experienced prescription drug error attorney.
For more helpful information, order a FREE copy of our book, “How to Make Pharmacies Pay for Injuries Caused by Medication Errors.”
Remember: We can’t stop all mistakes from happening, but we can at least prevent them from happening to someone else. For a free consultation on your child’s drug error case, call Kennedy Hodges today at 888-526-7616.