Patients expect that when they are given medication, it will make them feel better. However, fatal medication errors can happen in hospitals, clinics, and pharmacies, leaving the patient’s family with questions about what to do next.
There are several common medication errors that can be fatal. These include when a healthcare prescriber writes a prescription for a patient who is allergic to it, when the prescription has a bad interaction with another medication the patient is taking and when the dosage is incorrect.
Some medicines have similar names, which can lead to a prescribing error. Two medicines may have similar packaging, which can lead to confusion for the patient. Fatal medication errors can also happen if the pharmacy dispenses the medication incorrectly.
These are only some examples that can harm the patient.
Wrongful death claim
In New Mexico, family members can pursue compensation through a wrongful death action when a loved one dies because of the negligence of another person. Usually, a spouse, adult child, parent or other legal representative of the deceased person’s estate is authorized to do this.
In some cases, the parties may be able to resolve the claim through negotiations. If not, they still have the option to go to court where the judge will allow each side to present evidence and witnesses.
The family members may receive compensation for medical expenses, funeral costs, lost income and pain and suffering, among other items. The judge will decide this after reviewing all of the evidence.
There is help available to family members who need assistance with this process.