A recent study for the NHS concluded that errors involving dispensed medicines are killing up to 24,000 patients a year.
According to the report:
- NHS staff make 237 million drugs errors every year – more than a quarter of which injure patients and cost upto £1.6 billion;
- About 1 in 12 prescriptions is thought to contain an error;
- Two thirds of hospitals and some GPs still write paper prescriptions often with illegible handwriting which is a major cause of the mistakes;
- More than half of prescription mistakes happen when drugs are given and a fifth when prescriptions are written.
We fully support the Government’s attempt to reverse this trend and in particular to implement the report’s recommendations which include:
- medicines with similar names should have very different packaging to avoid confusion and
- helping fund a £3.5 billion infrastructure fund to make electronic prescriptions universal throughout the NHS.
As a firm specialising in medical negligence cases, we have experience of these type of cases and how they can impact greatly on a patient’s wellbeing.