Most major medication errors that occur involve some kind of human error, so many people assume that patients are the ones who make the most medication errors. After all, someone taking multiple prescriptions could easily mix up their medications or forget to take a dose, leading to a suboptimal outcome for their treatment.
However, receiving medication in a professional facility does not automatically protect you from the possibility of a medication mistake endangering your well-being. Many of the most dangerous medication mistakes involve professionally administered intravenous (IV) medications.
Distractions and other small mistakes can affect patient care
Maybe a pharmacy technician uses the wrong dosage when mixing medication to send over to the local hospital, or perhaps a nurse enters the drug information into the IV machinery improperly. There are many possible mistakes that can occur during IV drug administration, which is why roughly 60% of the serious or fatal medication mistakes that occur in the United States involve IV medications.
Timing errors are among the most common and can reduce how effective treatment is or lead to an overdose. Patients could also receive the wrong medication or the wrong dose. Despite the trust that people place in the modern medical system, human error is still a major concern. A few moments of distraction affecting a pharmacy worker or someone working in a hospital providing direct patient care could affect the success of treatment or the safety of the patient receiving a medication.
Understanding that Drug Administration mistakes frequently occur in professional settings could help you identify if you have suffered medical malpractice related to a medication error.