24 May '11, 12am

10 Common Medication Mistakes That Can Kill

10 Common Medication Mistakes That Can Kill

The numbers are simply staggering: Every year 1.5 million people are sickened or severely injured by medication mistakes, and 100,000 die. And yet all of those deaths are preventable. What’s the answer? We have to protect ourselves. Here are the ten medication mistakes experts say are most likely to kill or cause serious harm. 1. Confusing two medications with similar names It can happen anywhere in the transmission chain: Maybe the doctor’s handwriting is illegible, or the name goes into the pharmacy computer incorrectly, or the swap occurs when the wrong drug is pulled from the shelves. “Most pharmacies shelve drugs in alphabetical order, so you have drugs with similar names right next to each other, which makes it even more likely for someone to grab the wrong one,” says Michael Negrete, CEO of the nonprofit Pharmacy Foundation of California. According to the national M...

Full article: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/10-common-medication-mis...

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