In addition to caring for every resident’s nutritional, emotional, and social needs, nursing homes also have a legal obligation to ensure each person in their care receives appropriate and consistent medical care. This includes prescribed medications in proper dosages. Unfortunately, there are many examples every year of physicians and staff members failing to live up to this duty, sometimes resulting in residents suffering catastrophic and even fatal harm.
Medication errors in California nursing homes are a serious problem that can serve as justification for comprehensive civil recovery. If you or an elderly family member were harmed because a nursing home employee or contracted doctor provided the wrong medication, discuss legal options with a dedicated nursing home abuse lawyer to protect your family’s best interests.
How Do Medication Errors Happen Inside Nursing Homes?
Outside of nursing homes, medication errors often stem from mistakes either by physicians or the pharmacists who fill prescriptions. Within assisted living facilities, these mistakes can result from negligent staff members failing to help residents take the proper medications.
These kinds of medication errors in California nursing homes may entail a staff member forgetting to provide a resident with daily medication, inadvertently providing the wrong dosage, administering a medication incorrectly, or providing a resident with the wrong medication altogether. In some situations, a single mistake can negatively impact multiple residents. For instance, a staff member who mixes up two residents’ medications may cause serious harm to both people.
Pursuing Compensation for Medication Mistakes in CA Nursing Homes
Mistakes with medications inside local nursing homes often stem from simple recklessness or carelessness by individual staff members. These situations could serve as justification for a lawsuit or settlement demand against the specific negligent employee. However, a single nursing home employee rarely has the financial wherewithal on their own to cover the various financial, physical, and personal losses that this type of mistake can result in, nor are they the only party who may bear civil fault for those repercussions.
In many cases, nursing home administrators and owners can be held vicariously liable for negligence by their employees, or directly liable for their own misconduct in the form of lax hiring or training practices for new staff members. Alternatively, fault may lie with a physician or pharmacist who provided the wrong medication for a nursing home resident’s condition, failed to correctly diagnose that condition in the first place, or did not account for dangerous side effects or contraindications when prescribing a particular drug. Guidance from a skilled nursing home abuse lawyer can be vital in determining who is at fault for a medication error.
California Nursing Homes May Bear Civil Fault for Medication Errors
No matter the circumstances that led to a medication error for a nursing home resident, anyone whose negligence contributed to the mistake could bear civil liability for ensuing damages. However, having grounds for civil litigation and successfully recovering compensation are two very different things, especially if you are pursuing a claim on behalf of an elderly family member without seasoned legal counsel.
Assistance from a skilled lawyer can be essential to achieving a positive outcome for claims based on medication errors in California nursing homes. Learn more by calling our firm today and setting up a consultation.