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Patient’s Death Blamed on Illegible Prescription

Patient’s Death Blamed on Illegible Prescription

Earlier this month, a jury ruled on a case where a Texan doctor simply wrote out a prescription for a dialysis patient, and it went horribly wrong. Originally, he was going to prescribe 10 millimoles of potassium for the 72-year-old, but after writing that out, he decided she actually needed 20 millimoles. He did not rewrite the prescription, however, but instead tried to write the number “2” over the number “1.”

When nurses and pharmacists saw this, what they read was “120 millimoles”, an amount that should have been obviously fatal to these medical professionals, said plaintiff attorneys. And indeed, the patient died of an overdose.

The woman’s five adult daughters filed a medical malpractice suit against the doctor and the hospital. While the doctor admitted that he was negligent in how he wrote out the prescription, he contended that the hospital staff were even more so, since they did not catch an obviously erroneous prescription and did not even ask him about it.

After two days of deliberation, a jury decided that the women should be awarded $250,000 for their mother’s pain and suffering, $19,000 for funeral costs, and $110,000 for their own mental anguish. The jury also came to the decision that the doctor was 10 percent to blame for the wrongful death, while the hospital was assigned 90 percent of the liability.

While not just any mistake can be counted as medical malpractice, there are some errors that cross the line over to negligence, such an unreasonably incompetent medical professional who turns medication into dangerous drugs. If you or a loved one has been harmed by the negligence of medical staff, then you may be entitled to compensation for your pain and suffering and for the unnecessary medical bills that have been brought on you.

If you have lost a loved one, then while no amount of compensation could make amends, it can help you with the financial hardships you face in this time. If you think you might have medical or pharmacy malpractice case, then consult with our team of experienced Raleigh personal injury lawyers. At the Whitley Law Firm, we are tirelessly devoted to ensuring that our clients receive the compensation that they deserve. Find out what we may be able to do for you when you contact us today!