Medication errors are preventable events which cause injury or harm to a patient. There are more than 10,000 prescription medications currently available on the market, and according to statistics from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), more than 700,000 people visit emergency rooms each year because of some kind of adverse reaction to a medication. Another 100,000 people are hospitalized.
A new study has revealed just how prevalent medication errors are for children. There are more than 63,000 medication errors in pediatric prescribed medications every year. One-quarter of those children are infants who are 12 months old or younger. These numbers mean that every eight minutes, a child is being given the incorrect medicine or an incorrect dose.
The study was conducted by researchers from Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Central Ohio Poison Center and The Ohio State University College of Medicine. The research team examined data from the National Poison Database System of reports of medication errors which had occurred in children under six years of age during a ten year period.
There are more than 200,000 reports of medication errors made to poison control centers across the country. Almost 30 percent of these reports involve victims under six years old. Researchers say the numbers of mediation errors which occur are most likely much higher since many incidents are not reported to poison control centers.
The majority of medication errors involved liquid medications, with almost 82 percent of the reports. This explains why so many of the victims were young children, since they are the age group most likely to be given medicine in liquid rather than pill form.
The study discovered that at least twenty-five children died as a result of the medication errors.
If you or a loved one has been prescribed a medication which caused serious illness or side-effects, contact an experienced New Braunfels personal injury attorney to find out what compensation you may be entitled to for pain and loss.