Study Shows More Than Half of Medication Mistakes Are Avoidable

A new study reports more than 50 percent of all drug reactions treated in emergency rooms could have been prevented. Researchers in Sweden also reported many preventable drug mistakes, including overdoses and internal bleeding associated with drugs, are life-threatening events.

The study, explained by, cites things like poor coordination of care, lack of time by healthcare professionals, and lack of time with patients as reasons for the high numbers of patients who got sick from medication. Katja Hakkarainen, one of the researchers on the project, said the most important thing to do to address these mistakes is to make them transparent rather than hiding them.

The findings based on analysis of data from 22 previous studies. Among all adult outpatients, 2 percent suffered from a bad reaction to a drug. 51 percent of those reactions were preventable. For elderly patients, 71 percent of reactions were avoidable. 1.6 percent of inpatients suffered from a drug reaction and 45 percent of those hospital drug mistakes could have been prevented.

If a doctor, pharmacist, or hospital makes a medication error he, she, or they should be held responsible for the damage caused to patients. A Florida medication error lawyer can help. Not only does holding them accountable help the person who was hurt, it brings these mistakes to light, which is what the study suggested doing to help reduce the number of people who are hurt.


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