Mother sues pharmacy after dosage error kills daughter

When you get a prescription filled at a Philadelphia pharmacy, you probably don’t think about checking to make sure it is the right dose. After all, the pharmacist is a trained professional. However, pharmacists are also humans, and just as prone to error as anyone else, but when they make mistakes, fatal consequences can occur.

This was the case for a little girl who received the wrong dose of her prescription and died after taking it. The 6-year-old girl suffered from sickle cell anemia, a disease that can cause periods of pain, swelling in the extremities and infections. She was prescribed morphine in order to help ease the pain when it occurred on and off.

Although the girl’s mother had been a longtime customer at the pharmacy where the prescription was filled, she was given the incorrect dosage. Instead of the 20 milligrams per 10 milliliters of oral morphine solution that was prescribed, the pharmacy dispensed the prescription at a dose of 20 milligrams per 1 milliliter, effectively making the dose 10 times stronger.

The girl died of morphine toxicity in April 2012, just one day after taking the prescription. The girl’s mother has retained a lawyer and filed a medical wrongful death lawsuit against the pharmacy. Her lawyer says that the mother’s primary reason for the lawsuit is not about the money, but to get pharmacies to give greater heed to the training of their staff. Hopefully her lawsuit will do just that and enable her to have a sense of closure in the death of her little girl.

Source: Yahoo News, “Mom Sues Pharmacy After Daughter’s Fatal Overdose,” Katie Moisse, Aug. 21, 2013



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