Is A Nursing Home Medication Error Considered Abuse?

When it comes to nursing home abuse, most people think of physical injuries and emotional abuse. However, there is another form that could have a devastating impact on an older person's health. Medication errors, such as prescribing the wrong medication or dosage, is a form of abuse that should not be ignored. If your senior parent was the victim of a medication error while living in a nursing home, here is what you need to know:

What Is Considered a Medication Error?

Medication errors can vary from giving the wrong dosage to the wrong medication. It can also include the medication being administered in the wrong manner. For instance, if a medication is supposed to be given intravenously, but is given orally, the effectiveness of the medication could be impacted.

Errors can even include failing to check for interactions with other drugs or treatments. Nursing home staff are also responsible for ensuring that the medication does not interact poorly with the patient's diet.

There are other errors that can occur. Talk to your attorney and your parent's doctor to determine exactly which occurred in your parent's case.

What Can You Do?

The most important step you can take is to ensure your parent receives treatment for the medication error. You can also file a formal complaint with the nursing home and the state's adult protection services. If possible, obtain the medications that were given to your parent. They could become evidence in your case.

Your nursing home neglect attorney will act to obtain your parent's medical records from the nursing home and his or her doctors. Once those records are received, the lawyer will rely on a medical expert to review the records and determine if there was negligence from the nursing home staff.

If there was negligence on the part of the nursing home, you can file a personal injury lawsuit against the facility. Depending on the details of your case, some staff members could be specifically targeted in your lawsuit.

The doctors outside of the facility who treated your parent might also be liable. For instance, if the doctor wrote a prescription for the wrong dosage, you could choose to file a malpractice claim against him or her.

You and your parent do not have to be financially responsible for the injuries that were caused by the nursing home or doctor. Filing a personal injury or malpractice claim could possibly leave to a financial award that can help with any expenses incurred.