Many people assume that they can sue their doctor for medical malpractice in the event of a medical mistake occurs that causes injury. But this isn't true. Many parties can be subject to medical malpractice, like compound pharmacies.
Compound pharmacy labs are actually very commonplace. They are basically medical labs tasked with altering or mixing medications to meet individual patient's needs.
But sadly, many patients unnecessarily suffer harm from medications mixed at these entities. Here's why.
Why compounding is needed
Many drugs today on the commercial market do not suit individual needs. For various reasons, some patients have unique needs that require a customized creation of a pharmaceutical drug.
Such instances can include:
- Adding a flavor to a child's medication to make it more appetizing
- Removing gluten, dye or other allergic addition to a commercially made drug
- Altering a drug's dosage
In some instances, however, these labs are not sterile; medications become contaminated with dust, foreign materials or other harming substances due to unsafe sanitary practices.
One incident at a lab in San Diego reveals just how harmful this is to individuals.
A California Incident
According to recent state records, over 7,000 patients were exposed to contaminated medications in 2015 that came from a compound pharmacy located inside Paradise Valley Hospital in California.
According to documentation via the Californian Public Records Act, the hospital's head of infection control failed to properly monitor the labs sanitary procedures. She even falsified documents to cover up the noncompliance, altering a surveillance checklist conducted in 2013 for the year 2015.
As of today, there have thankfully been no instances of severe infection or harm to patients who had medications fulfilled at this particular lab.
The 2013 Meningitis Outbreak
But patients who have had fulfillments at other labs haven't been so lucky. In 2013, contaminated injections made by a compound pharmacy in Massachusetts result in a meningitis outbreak across the country that resulted in 64 fatalities.
Fortunately, patients and their families who suffer injury by the hands of a physician, pharmacists or healthcare entities have legal recourse options.
A medical malpractice lawsuit can be filed. However, these lawsuits are complex. Contacting an experienced med mal attorney to explain the process and potential, compensation available is recommended.