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Medication errors may be widespread at nursing homes

When people in New Mexico don't respond well to medications, they -- or their family members -- might suspect that the drugs they are receiving are not the right ones; many people receive the incorrect dosage of drugs, or sometimes the wrong drug altogether. When these patients are in nursing homes, however, it can be more difficult for family members to detect that their loved ones are the victims of medication errors. After all, families put their trust in care facilities with the expectation that their family members will be taken care of properly.

Unfortunately, there are plenty of stories of elderly people being the victims of medication errors in nursing homes -- some who become permanently disabled or even die as a result of these preventable mistakes.

In one case, a diabetic patient who was supposed to spend just a few days in a care facility after leaving the hospital ended up leaving unconscious, in a coma, because his diabetes was not treated. He died shortly thereafter.

There are countless other examples. One woman didn't receive the eye drops she had been prescribed, and lost her vision in one eye as a result. Another patient who was allergic to penicillin was given it anyway. And in a tragic case, a woman received a diabetes medication that had actually been prescribed for the woman's roommate. She suffered a hypoglycemic reaction and died.

Whenever medication errors occur, someone should be held accountable. An experienced medical malpractice attorney can help people who have been affected by medical errors to organize their case.

Source: WXYZ-TV, "Prescription for danger: Medication errors inside nursing homes lead to hospitalization, death," Ross Jones, Nov. 13, 2013

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