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4 Tips on how to prevent medication errors

27th Feb 18 11:06 am

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Did you know that medication errors are completely preventable? The very best defense you have is to ask questions and become informed regarding the medications that you are taking. Finding the right online pharmacy is a great way to reduce these types of errors.

While medication errors may actually sound harmless, mistakes with administering, dispensing and prescribing medications injure over one million people each year in the U.S. However, the majority of these issues can be prevented. Do you know how to protect yourself or your family?

One of the very best ways that you can reduce your risk of suffering some type of harm due to medication errors is to take an active role in your medical care. Learn as much as you can about the medications that you are taking, which should include the possible side effects. Do not ever hesitate to ask questions or share your concerns with your physician, pharmacist or other health care provider.

What are medication errors?

A medication error is a preventable event that results from certain medications being used in an inappropriate manner. A medication error that creates harm is referred to as an adverse drug event.

One example of medication errors is taking an over-the-counter product that includes acetaminophen when you are currently taking a pain medicine that contains this ingredient, which can put you at risk of exceeding the dose recommendation and causing liver damage.

How do these errors occur?

Even though a medication error may happen at any location, which includes your home, the majority of these take place in hospitals, pharmacies or doctor’s offices. When you know what you are facing, you will have a better chance of staying free of any medication mistakes. Some of the most common reasons that medication errors occur include:

·        Improper communication between your health care providers.

·        Poor communication from doctors to their patients.

·        Medication names that sound alike or the use of medical abbreviations.

·        Prescriptions that are illegible or that have confusing directions.

The key to medication error prevention: Communication

Knowledge is a person’s best defense. If you do not fully understand something that your doctor tells you, you need to ask for clarification. When you begin to take a new medication be sure that you find out the following:

·        The brand and generic name.

·        What it will do and how long will it take to see results?

·        What the right dosage is and how long should it be taken?

·        Are there any activities, drinks, foods or other medications to avoid while you are taking this?

·        Are there any possible side effects and what course of action should be taken if they occur?

·        What should you do if a dose is missed?

·        What should you do if you take too much?

Choosing the right pharmacy will allow you to get this type of information with ease. Even if you are looking for a provider for online NHS repeat prescriptions, you should have no problem doing so with a bit of research.

Consult with your doctor

If you are beginning to take a new medication, you need to read the warning labels to figure out what the side effects may be. If you start to experience severe side effects with the new medication, then going in to speak with your doctor is a must. These medical professionals will be able to assess your overall condition and offer you advice about whether or not you need to stop taking the medication. By doing this, you can avoid doing any permanent to your body. If your body is having an adverse reaction to a medication, your doctor can find a replacement.

While asking plenty of questions is essential, it is still not enough to fully prevent medication errors. You will also have share any information with your pharmacist or doctor, especially if you have changed doctors or began taking a new medication.


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