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Worried Patients Seek Protection Against Prescription Errors

A recently released survey revealed significant concern among healthcare consumers about medical mistakes.
The survey from Wolters Kluwer Health covered 1000 consumers in the U.S. The results indicated almost 30 percent of Americans have faced a medical mistake, either themselves, or through a third-party. The survey also revealed that most people think that there is a solution and that as technology improves, medical mistakes will decrease.
One risk for New York patients, and health consumers in general, is medication errors, particularly those related to prescription drugs. Every single time that a medication is prescribed or dispensed, there are numerous healthcare providers involved, from the prescribing doctor to the nurse to the pharmacist. The correct medicine and dosage must accurately translate through this chain of command and there are mistakes along the way.
The Wolters Kluwer survey indicated that patients are taking preventative actions against mistakes like medication errors by doing their own research on diagnosis and medications and writing down instructions to give to their caregivers so that nothing is lost in translation.
The survey showed that 73 percent of consumers are concerned about medical mistakes. According to the results, worries tend to increase with age and women are more anxious about potential medical mistakes than men.
Improved technologies will not be a cure-all. In the case of medication errors, electronic prescriptions can deed play an important role.
Many hospitals have already made the effort to redesign their systems to fulfill prescriptions electronically. Many more hospitals, however, have yet to do so.

Author

Jay W. Dankner

JAY W. DANKNER was born, raised and educated in Brooklyn, New York. After graduation from law school in 1973, he joined the firm of the legendary, Harry H, Lipsig, under whose tutelage he learned the intricacies of civil litigation and trials. He tried and won his first case against General Motors in a case involving a design defect within weeks after his admission. Thereafter, he focused his attention on the emerging and developing field of law known as products liability litigation.

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