For nursing home residents who take medications, making sure they receive each medication in the correct dosage should be among their caretakers’ top priorities. From blood pressure and blood sugar medications to anti-inflammatories and medications that help prevent seizures, all types of prescription medications can be essential to ensuring that seniors are comfortable, in good health; and at limited risk for dangerous illnesses and injuries.
However, studies have shown that medication errors are among the leading forms of negligence and abuse in nursing homes. Nurses and other caretakers routinely make mistakes -- from mixing up medications to forgetting to administer medications entirely. Sadly, overdosing residents and withholding residents’ medications are prevalent forms of intentional abuse in nursing homes as well.
If you are concerned about possible medication errors in a nursing home, we can help. Attorney Tim Babiarz and the hand-picked legal team at the Babiarz Law Firm, PA have been helping seniors and their loved ones for more than 20 years. We have experience in cases involving nursing home neglect and abuse, and we work with trusted medical experts who can help you understand if your situation calls for intervention.
Common Medication Errors in Nursing Homes
There are no excuses for medication errors in nursing homes. Staff members who administer medications should have adequate training and experience, and nursing homes should have systems and safeguards in place to ensure that residents receive their medications as prescribed. Staff members must also give due consideration to any warning labels and potential side effects, and they should be trained to identify the symptoms of adverse drug interactions.
Unfortunately, nursing homes and their employees routinely fail to provide residents with the appropriate quality of care. This includes a high rate of medication errors, such as:
- Failing to check for allergies or possible drug interactions
- Failing to monitor residents who are under the effects of medications
- Mixing up residents’ medications
- Overdose (administering too much of a medication or providing a medication too frequently)
- Under-dose (administering too little of a medication or failing to provide a medication entirely)
- Administering medications without shaking, mixing or rolling
- Administering the wrong medications
- Crushing and splitting pills that should not be crushed or split
- Failing to administer medications with food or water
Potential Complications From Nursing Home Medication Errors
All types of medication errors have the potential to lead to serious complications; and, tragically, many medication errors can be fatal. Complications from medication errors range from nausea and dizziness (which can increase seniors’ risks of sustaining traumatic injuries in falls), to seizures, heart attacks; and asphyxiation. As a result, anyone concerned about a possible medication error in a nursing home should treat their situation as a potential medical emergency, and seek independent medical advice (outside of the nursing home) as soon as possible.
Contact The Villages® Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer for More Information
If you would like to speak with an attorney about how to address potential medication errors in a nursing home, or if you need to seek financial compensation for medical bills and other losses resulting from a medication error, we encourage you to schedule a free consultation. To speak with attorney Tim Babiarz, please call (352) 205-7599 or contact us online now.