Medication Errors Cause Severe Injuries and Deaths in Nursing Homes
Many nursing home residents in Missouri and Kansas take multiple medications daily. Common medications prescribed to nursing home residents include blood thinners, blood pressure medication, heart medications, insulin, laxatives, antipsychotics, and pain medication. When a medication error occurs, the patient may suffer severe injuries or death.
If your family member has been harmed due to a medication error at a nursing home, our nursing home abuse attorney in Kansas City is here to help. Our law firm handles nursing home abuse and neglect cases in Kansas and Missouri. Contact our legal team to schedule a free consultation by calling 816-203-0143 or completing our online contact form.
Types of Medication Errors in Nursing Homes in Missouri & Kansas
Unfortunately, many cases involving nursing home abuse and neglect in Missouri and Kansas result from medication errors. Negligent staff members do not administer medications correctly or timely. Common medication errors at nursing homes include:
- Giving the patient the incorrect medication
- Administering the incorrect dose of medication
- Failing to give a nursing home resident required medication
- Failing to check for drug interactions
- Giving medication outside of the time window
- Injecting medication into the wrong area
- Failing to ensure patients take the medication
- Giving patients expired medications
- Prescribing the incorrect medication
- Crushing or slicing medications that should not be split
- Failing to provide a resident with water or food to take medication
- Poor medication management
- Failing to review a resident’s chart
- Ignoring medication orders
A licensed nurse or certified medication aide under the supervision of a nurse makes a med pass. During the med pass, the staff member takes medications to patients who are due medications during that time frame. Generally, the medications and supplies are kept in a rolling cart.
A typical med pass, or medication distribution, can last for two or more hours, depending on the size of the nursing home and the medications required for residents. During that time, the nurse or staff member may become distracted, which could lead to a medication error.
Sadly, some medication errors result from a staff member who does not properly ensure that residents receive their medications correctly or not.
Consequences of Medication Errors in Nursing Homes in Missouri & Kansas
Patients who do not receive medications could suffer from life-threatening conditions, including strokes, heart attacks, and blood clots. In some cases, a resident’s condition may worsen because they did not receive the correct medication or medication dose.
Giving a nursing home resident the wrong medication could result in seizures, brain damage, and other conditions. A resident may require hospitalization and treatment. In some cases, a patient could be allergic to medication and suffer a severe allergic reaction when given the incorrect medication.
Permanent impairments and wrongful death are consequences of nursing home medication errors in Kansas and Missouri.
Can I Sue a Nursing Home for a Medication Error in Missouri & Kansas?
Nursing homes owe a duty of care to their residents. That duty of care extends to administering medications correctly. Understaffing and improper medication protocols are often the cause of medication errors in nursing homes. Intentional wrongdoing, such as stealing medications, may also be a problem.
Inadequate communication between the facility and physicians could also be a cause of medication errors. In addition, failing to train staff members in medication procedures contributes to nursing home medication errors.
When a nursing home breaches the duty of care through negligence or other wrongdoing, the nursing home can be held financially liable for damages.
Damages that a resident may be entitled to receive for a nursing home medication error include:
- Cost of medical treatment and care resulting from the medication error
- Compensation for pain and suffering, including emotional distress and physical discomfort
- Cost of additional long-term nursing or skilled care caused by permanent impairments
- Compensation for disabilities or impairments caused by the incorrect medication
If a nursing home resident dies because of a medication error, the family may be entitled to compensation for a wrongful death claim. While a wrongful death lawsuit does not ease the family’s grief or bring back a loved one, it can call attention to nursing home negligence.
By holding the nursing home accountable for negligent acts, future patients may not suffer the same harm from medication errors. Also, the family may receive some measure of closure in seeking justice for their love done.
What Should I Do If I Suspect the Nursing Home Made a Medication Error?
First, seek immediate medical attention for your family member. Then, file an official complaint with the nursing home management. Depending on the severity of the situation, you may also want to file a nursing home complaint with state offices.
If you feel your loved one is in danger or you cannot trust the nursing home, find alternative living arrangements as quickly as possible.
Nursing home abuse and neglect could be a criminal matter. Your loved one may also have a civil claim against the nursing home. Therefore, it is wise to seek legal advice from our experienced Kansas City nursing home abuse attorney.
Medication errors may be challenging to prove. The sooner we gather medical records and nursing home records, the better chance we have of building a strong case for negligence. Our nursing home attorney in Kansas City assists you by:
- Explaining your legal rights regarding nursing home medication errors
- Identifying the at-fault parties who are liable for damages in your case
- Obtaining medical records and nursing home records
- Requesting copies of videos of the incident, if available
- Consulting with medical professionals and medical experts about your loved one’s injuries and damages
- Interviewing witnesses and gathering additional evidence
Our legal team handles every aspect of your case, from filing claims and negotiating settlements to filing lawsuits.
Call for a Free Case Review from Our Kansas City Nursing Home Injury Lawyer
You and your family member deserve answers about what happened. Kevin J. McManus is a very skilled and experienced nursing home attorney who regularly pursues abuse and neglect cases against nursing homes in Kansas and Missouri.
Contact our law firm to schedule a free consultation by calling 816-203-0143 or completing our online contact form.