You trust your doctor and pharmacist to help you manage your health complications, but you have to realize that health care professionals sometimes make mistakes. What do you know about medication errors?
To better ensure that your prescriptions do not do more harm than good, see what tips the FDA offers on preventing medication errors. Understand how you can do your part to become a better advocate for your health.
Learn more about your prescriptions
Whenever you receive a prescription from your doctor, ask which medication it is and why you need to take it, specifically. Repeat the same line of questioning with your pharmacist. This better ensures that you, your doctor and your pharmacist are all on the same page regarding your treatment.
Study the label
Do you take more than one medication at a time? If so, get into the habit of checking the label on the bottle before taking your dose. To lower your chances of taking the wrong medication or the wrong dosage, consider using a pill organizer.
Check how to take the medication
Do not assume that you know how to take a medication. Double-check with your doctor and pharmacist if you are ever unsure. Additionally, ask whether you should store the medication at room temperature, out of direct sunlight or in the refrigerator.
Keep a list of your prescriptions
Another tip for those who take more than one prescription is to keep an updated list of all medications. This list should also include supplements, herbal remedies, over-the-counter medication and any other substances taken. Share this list with your doctor and pharmacist.
Avoiding medication errors is a team job. Should a mistake happen despite your precautions, meet with a legal advocate to determine if you have a case on your hands.