Unfortunately, patients are sometimes given too much of the medication they need. If you have been injured or lost a loved one due to a medication overdose caused by a medical professional’s negligence, you may be entitled to monetary damages. Our skilled Baltimore medical injury attorneys are well versed in handling complex cases involving overdoses and can apply our experience to your case.
An Ohio doctor has been accused of ordering excessive and potentially deadly doses of opioids to dozens of near-death patients. He is now is facing multiple counts of murder. Specifically, the doctor was charged in 25 deaths after an investigation, which lasted half a year, by the local prosecutor’s office. The fatalities uncovered an outrageous case of medical oversight and medical malpractice, shedding light on ongoing failures by tens of employees. The deaths in the case occurred between 2015 and 2018. Most of the doctor’s victims were older and already seriously ill, but some were younger patients visiting the hospital for less severe health conditions who were ultimately given much more fentanyl than they needed. The motive for the doctor’s behavior is still unclear and he has pled not guilty. While this is an Ohio case, the sad reality is that medication errors affect Maryland patients as well.
Medication overdoses can happen for a number of reasons, including:
- Wrong prescriptions – an overdose can be the result of a doctor or nurse practitioner writing a prescription that is too high in dosage or instructs the patient to take the medication too often.
- Pharmacy mistakes – if a pharmacy fills the prescription with the wrong dose of medication or the wrong medication altogether, a patient could inadvertently overdose.
- Incorrect administration – if you were hospitalized or in a healthcare facility where the nurses or doctors were administering the medication to you directly then an error on their part (i.e., giving too much medication, giving the wrong medication, giving the medication too frequently, etc.) could result in an overdose.
Prescription pain medication must be prescribed and managed carefully or patients can overdose. Physicians who are negligent in prescribing or administering pain medication may be liable for medical malpractice. Medical malpractice occurs when a medical professional fails to act in the way that a reasonably prudent medical professional in the same speciality would have acted under the same or similar circumstances, thereby injuring the patient. To establish malpractice, it must be shown that a medical professional’s conduct deviated from the appropriate standard of care and that the deviation was a direct and proximate cause of the patient’s harm.