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James Bell targets repeat prescription errors

By Principal Lawyer, Clinical Negligence

Medication errors make up a fifth of all errors occurring in general practice and extra care must be taken when repeat prescriptions are being issued.
I am acting on one case where a prescription issued by a hospital was written up into the GP records. The prescription was for prednisolone, a type of steroid used to treat Crohn’s disease.
The drug was suitable to treat acute episodes of Crohn’s disease only. It is not meant to be taken on a regular basis for long periods of time.
However, by putting the drug on repeat prescription, with no follow up checks, the result was that my client took a high dose of prednisolone, every day for just over 3 years.
The problem with repeat prescribing is that the initial error is repeated, and compounded. The Medical Protection Society, one of the two bi insurers of General Practitioners, found that 34% of practices they visited did not have a robust repeat prescribing policy in place – paving the way for prescribing risks such as the one set out above.

My client has been diagnosed with osteoporosis in his spine as a result of the repeated negligent prescriptions.James Bell is a Partner in the Russell Jones & Walker clinical negligence team. If you or a member of your family have a clinical negligence enquiry please call our expert clinical negligence solicitors on 0800 916 9049, fill in our short online claim form or email and one of our specialist clinical negligence team will be in touch.