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Patient vigilance can prevent prescription errors

On Behalf of | Feb 4, 2018 | Failure to Diagnose |

While a majority of medical errors are the direct result of a misstep on the part of health care providers, patients play a critical role in guaranteeing their safety. People in New York who are seeking medical treatment can secure a better defense against the dangers of medical malpractice by maintaining vigilance and playing a proactive role in their health care. 

A common medical error that is oftentimes preventable, is prescription discrepancies that can contribute to a patient’s risk of injury, worsened health and even death in the most serious of cases. According to U.S. News, nearly 1.5 million people are victims of some type of medication error every year. 

Fortunately, patient education can help prevent these types of costly mistakes. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration suggests some proactive things that people can do when they are prescribed a medication, to help protect their well-being and avoid mishaps that could cause them harm. Some of the things they can do include the following:

  • They should write down any questions they have about the medication and make sure they receive an understandable answer to each one. 
  • They should read labels in their entirety to properly understand dosage amounts and timing restrictions to avoid overdoses.
  • They should disclose all of the medications they are currently taking to their health care provider, and they should also discuss any potential allergies that could cause harm. 

When someone is prescribed a medication to take, they should make sure they fully understand the purpose of the prescription and what to expect once they begin taking it.  

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