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  • Dispensing errors compensation for patients

    Hi, I am a pharmacy student and currently working as a part-time dispenser in a community pharmacy. I am quite new in dispensing and dispensing errors happenned... and it has been twice (in 4 months), my pharmacists missed them too.

    This time, I got a script of 6 items and one of them is 2x28 Istin. I didnt know how i missed it and i dispensed 1x28 (maybe because i only print out 1x28 label and dispense against the labels). Later, when the patient get it, she called up and worried nothing else but "this is your error. Now what you can do for me? This is serious, do you know what will happen to me because of your error??" I apologize and asked her if she could come to collect the other box... she said "I lived 3 miles away! Do you know how inconvenient it is to me! etc..."

    And the other time, I dispensed telmisartan 80mg instead of 20mg. The dosage is 1 tablet daily. The patient came back 3 days later complaining of the error and claimed that she had taken 5 of them... she sounds less concerning about her health and keeps on demanding that it was our fault and should do something about it...

    So... i heard about these compensation thingy that most community pharmacies do... how does it works? Does it means that the company is bribing the patient to keep quiet? I never wanted to ask my colleagues because i felt guilty enough to say nothing but sorry... Sometimes, i felt like i'm being blackmailed by these patients. Can somebody tell me more about this?

  • #2
    Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

    Originally posted by algie View Post
    Hi, I am a pharmacy student and currently working as a part-time dispenser in a community pharmacy. I am quite new in dispensing and dispensing errors happenned... and it has been twice (in 4 months), my pharmacists missed them too.

    This time, I got a script of 6 items and one of them is 2x28 Istin. I didnt know how i missed it and i dispensed 1x28 (maybe because i only print out 1x28 label and dispense against the labels). Later, when the patient get it, she called up and worried nothing else but "this is your error. Now what you can do for me? This is serious, do you know what will happen to me because of your error??" I apologize and asked her if she could come to collect the other box... she said "I lived 3 miles away! Do you know how inconvenient it is to me! etc..."

    And the other time, I dispensed telmisartan 80mg instead of 20mg. The dosage is 1 tablet daily. The patient came back 3 days later complaining of the error and claimed that she had taken 5 of them... she sounds less concerning about her health and keeps on demanding that it was our fault and should do something about it...

    So... i heard about these compensation thingy that most community pharmacies do... how does it works? Does it means that the company is bribing the patient to keep quiet? I never wanted to ask my colleagues because i felt guilty enough to say nothing but sorry... Sometimes, i felt like i'm being blackmailed by these patients. Can somebody tell me more about this?
    See the guidance at...
    http://www.rpsgb.org/pdfs/restooldealdisperr.pdf

    Have a look at the checking technician training on how to check scripts it will help you to develop your own 'radar'.
    47 BC : Julius Cesar : Veni Vidi Vici : I came, I saw I conquered.
    2018 AD : Modern Man : I shopped, I clicked, I collected.
    How times change.

    If you find you have read something that has upset or offended you an anyway please unread it at once.

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    • #3
      Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

      There is a welsh solicitor who advertises on net for people who have had a dispensing error. Sorry forgotten link but google will find.
      One reason Lloyds have such powerful glue on their labels to stop pts transposing them and claiming an error.
      johnep

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

        Originally posted by johnep View Post
        There is a welsh solicitor who advertises on net for people who have had a dispensing error. Sorry forgotten link but google will find.
        One reason Lloyds have such powerful glue on their labels to stop pts transposing them and claiming an error.
        johnep
        One day everything will have to be tamper proof to prevent this.
        47 BC : Julius Cesar : Veni Vidi Vici : I came, I saw I conquered.
        2018 AD : Modern Man : I shopped, I clicked, I collected.
        How times change.

        If you find you have read something that has upset or offended you an anyway please unread it at once.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

          Error 1 is inconvenience - no harm done.
          Record the incident apologize and make all reasonable attempts to put right - Delivering the istin if necessary. In law there is no compensation for what might have happened.

          Error 2 is a bit more serious, again good practice (if not vital!) to log details. Your company should have a procedure for recording errors and dealing with complaints - if it doesn't then they need to write one. Do all you can to rectify the problem - swap to correct tablets and inform the GP of the error.

          If someone then wants to make a bigger deal if it then pass this onto your line manager, I can't see it going any further. I have never heard of anyone bunging a few ££ and this is only likely to make matters worse.
          All pharmacies must have insurance and I would advise you to get your own from the PDA the day you qualify.

          We are all human but in this crazy profession we are not allowed to make human errors!

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

            Absolutely, The PDA is a very good aid to sleeping at night.
            johnep

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

              If you are only a Pharmacy student and you are working as a Dispenser, then the Buck stops with the Registered Pharmacist who should have made the final check before handing the meds out to the patient; A non-pharmacist cannot be held liable above a pharmacist. That is why Phcists get paid so much more than Dispensers: because the final legal responsibility rests with them!(even when the prescriber has made a mistake, as in the recent Lloyds dexamethasone case...)
              Ze genuine Article, present & perfect!

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

                The key thing that most pharmacists don't understand is that to have a compensation case you have to have suffered a 'loss'. This means a siginificant discomfort e.g. death or a bad reaction. If someone somes back with the wrong tablets, which they haven't taken where's the loss? Nobody can 'sue' for the cost of having to return to the pharmacy. The majority of people, in my experience are ok if you apologise profusely.
                However you can always rely on the Pharm Soc to persue you. I know of one case where someone was done because they didn't put a PIL in the packaging.
                Death to the Pharm Soc

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

                  Originally posted by Zoggite View Post
                  If you are only a Pharmacy student and you are working as a Dispenser, then the Buck stops with the Registered Pharmacist who should have made the final check before handing the meds out to the patient; A non-pharmacist cannot be held liable above a pharmacist. That is why Phcists get paid so much more than Dispensers: because the final legal responsibility rests with them!(even when the prescriber has made a mistake, as in the recent Lloyds dexamethasone case...)
                  Fines in Boots peppermint water baby death case

                  In your dreams.

                  Jeff

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

                    Originally posted by johnep View Post
                    There is a welsh solicitor who advertises on net for people who have had a dispensing error. Sorry forgotten link but google will find.
                    One reason Lloyds have such powerful glue on their labels to stop pts transposing them and claiming an error.
                    johnep
                    What I do when signing off scripts is to initial partly on the label and partly on the box: this means I can easily tell if the labels been moved.
                    Also, if its off an owing I put "owing" after my initials, if its phones, etc etc.
                    ....just my opinion

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

                      Originally posted by paco View Post
                      The key thing that most pharmacists don't understand is that to have a compensation case you have to have suffered a 'loss'. This means a siginificant discomfort e.g. death or a bad reaction.

                      Not quite true. A patient can, and will once advised, claim for distress etc.
                      My experience is that the contractor's liability insurance will settle so long as that which is agreed is less than the cost of fighting the case.

                      It is stupid for a pharmacy company to offer anything to a patient in these circumstances no matter how guilty anyone feels. Offering a "sweetener" is tantamount to an admission of guilt and it WILL be used against you. I don't know anyone who has or would offer a sweetener after an error.

                      In response to the request by the wronged patient asking "what will you do for me?" you can only offer the contact details of your indemnity insurers.

                      As a proprietor of several pharmacies since late 1981 I have had my fair share of claims over the intervening 27 years. One was for a small child who got chloramphenicol ear drops instead of eye drops and it made him cry as they stung his (already sore) eyes. His mother complained and got a solicitor on the job. The NPA settled for £750 and the money was put in trust for the child until aged 18. His mother was so enraged at what her solicitor accepted. and more to the point that it wasn't paid to her, that she went to the local press. I was front page news on a Saturday night and it was subsequently reported in the Mirror and Mail.

                      At the time I was horrified and expected a public backlash but it never happened. All comments from the public were supportive and friendly and the newspapers quickly became fish and chip wrappers.
                      Last edited by Tony Schofield; 22, May 2009, 06:55 AM. Reason: Howler of a spelling mistake
                      http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=Hmbyj0XFUhA

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

                        Originally posted by Tony Schofield View Post
                        It is stupid for a pharmacy company to offer anything to a patient in these circumstances no matter how guilty anyone feels. Offering a "sweetener" is tantamount to an admission of guilt and it WILL be used against you. I don't know anyone who has or would offer a sweetener after an error.
                        I do (did - it was a while back)
                        It wasn't real errors though - "sweetners" for those that complained.

                        "You only gave 28 when the script was for 30"
                        "It is company policy to give the exact quantity prescribed - please accept our apologies and a £xx money off voucher that can be used next time you shop at xxxx"


                        "Why did you confuse my calendar pack of 28 tablets and give me two extra."

                        "It is company policy to not chop up calendar packs - please accept our apologies and a £xx money off voucher that can be used next time you shop at xxxx "

                        Jeff

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

                          Jeff!!

                          That avatar doesn't suit you. Please go back to something a little more........erm.........dangerous?
                          http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=Hmbyj0XFUhA

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

                            Happy now?

                            Jeff

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Dispensing errors compensation for patients

                              NO!!!!!

                              I want skulls and crossbones, voodoo symbols, naked ladies in leather (oops, a little toooo carried away!) You know the stuff.
                              http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=Hmbyj0XFUhA

                              Comment

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