Protect yourself from a medicine-related injury or lawsuit
Almost everyone has used prescription or over-the-counter medication at one point in their lives. Although there are strict procedures that pharmaceutical companies, pharmacists, and medical professionals go through to ensure proper safety, errors may occur. We believe that it’s important to be vigilant citizens so that if issues arise, we are better prepared to tackle them. The following checklist will help you do just that.
- Make a list of medications your care taking and what they are for.
- Create another list of previous medications and what they were for.
- Use the same pharmacy for all prescriptions so they can keep a complete file.
- Make sure the pharmacist has given you printed information about dosage, how often to take the medication, possible interaction with foods or other drugs, and side effects to watch for.
- Be aware of side effects you’ve experienced in the past.
- Find out the expiration date of the medicine, and how many times you may refill your prescription.
- Take note of storing conditions. Make sure your medications are out of reach from children.
- Ask your doctor when you can expect to feel better after starting new medication.
- Be aware of what happens if you miss a dose.
- Ask your doctor if the medication is addictive and what to do if it is.
- Get a copy of your prescription so you can refill it if you are travelling.
- Keep medication in its original containers. Make sure you know what each of your medicines looks like. Then, if you should have an adverse reaction, you will be able to identify the source.
- Read the package insert that comes with your medication for important information, such as overdose symptoms and warnings.
- Notice any side effects as you take them. Sometimes with diet change or lifestyle change, your body may react differently to prescription drugs that didn’t cause any concerns before.
- Keep in a handy place the phone numbers for your local emergency medical service and poison control centers.
- Do not flush your pills down the toilet or pour them down the drain.
- If your community has a drug take-back program or hazardous waste collection site, this is the ideal way for disposal.
At Fine, Farkash & Parlapiano, P.A., we care about your rights and want to help you avoid potentially disastrous situations when possible. By taking these steps to ensure that you are fully aware of your medications and health effects, you will be more prepared if a pharmaceutical error affects your life.