Prescribing the wrong medication and other errors

A prescribing error can have serious complications and if your health has been adversely affected as a result of being given the wrong medication or the wrong dose of medication you may be able to make a claim for medical negligence compensation.

To discuss your circumstances contact Wellers Law Group for a free, no obligation first meeting so that you can tell us what happened to you. We will then make an assessment of your claim and advise you on your options,

Duty of care

Any person who provides you with medication has a duty of care to ensure your health is not put at risk by their actions, including:

  • GPs
  • hospital doctors
  • nurse practitioners
  • pharmacists
  • healthcare professionals who administer a prescribed medication

A claim for prescription error negligence might be possible if the error caused injury, such as the pro-longing of a condition, an allergic reaction, and damage to health as a result of too much or too little medication being administered.

Prescription errors

Doctors and nurse practitioners have a duty to ensure that when prescribing medication they do so with care. The following are some of the prescribing errors that can lead to a medical negligence claim:

  • Not checking patient medical history for known allergies.
  • Not checking medication conflicts with drugs already prescribed.
  • Prescribing the wrong or inappropriate medication for the diagnosed illness or condition.
  • Dose errors – including prescribing too much, too little or advising the wrong frequency of administering.
  • Repeat prescriptions – including failing to review and allowing repeat medications to be dispensed for longer than recommended.
  • Illegible handwriting and/or lack of information when prescribing medication which cause dispensing and administering errors.

Dispensing errors

All personnel who provide healthcare services to patients, including dispensing pharmacists, have a duty to ensure the safety of those patients. Dispensing errors can have serious consequences and include:

  • Medication labelling errors during preparation.
  • Mixing up patient prescriptions.
  • Failing to ensure suitable instructions are included for the correct administering of a medication, including dose and frequency.
  • Failing to keep accurate records of dispensing.
  • Failing to ensure the authenticity of medications dispensed.
  • Handling and storage errors of susceptible medications.
  • Failing to comprehend and challenge a prescription which a pharmacist feels is unsuitable or potentially harmful

Administering errors

Nurses and all healthcare professionals have a duty of care to ensure that any medication they are responsible for administering to a patient as part of their employment is correct. Errors relating to the administering of medication include:

  • Misreading the prescribing notes.
  • Dosage errors: administering too much, too little, or at the wrong frequency.
  • Failing to comprehend and challenge a prescription of medication which the healthcare practitioner feels is unsuitable or potentially harmful.
  • Hygiene and medication handling errors.

If an administering error occurs in a care home, it is likely that the medical negligence claim would need to be made against the owners or managers of the home.

Find out more about how we have helped patients who have suffered prescribing errors on our Medical Negligence Claim Case Studies page.

Prescribing errors and wrong medication claims with Wellers Law group

If you believe you have suffered harm as a result of medical negligence, including medication errors, misdiagnosis and delayed treatment, we can help you determine whether a claim is likely to be successful.

Contact the medical negligence lawyers at Wellers Law Group on 0208 290 7958 and or email