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:

  1. medicines with similar names should have very different packaging to avoid confusion and
  2. 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.