When an accident happens and victims are hurt, emergency medical personnel must move quickly to stabilize those who are harmed and transport them to trauma centers where they can receive further medical care. In some cases, Florida EMTs may have to administer certain medications to victims to provide them with pain management and to stop further harm from happening in their bodies. In these frenetic environments, medication errors can happen and patients can suffer additional serious harm.
As technology improved over the ages, and the use of computers became increasingly common. Thus, health care professionals in Florida and across the nation, backed by a law passed by the federal government, moved from keeping paper medical records to keeping electronic health records. The idea was that electronic records would reduce medical errors, and they would provide patients with a portable system in which they could easily share their medical history with any other health care provider -- something that could prove invaluable in a life-threatening emergency.
It may seem that as more hospitals and medical centers in Florida move towards electronic systems for prescribing medications, that sloppy handwriting on the part of physicians is no longer an issue. However, whether a prescription is sent electronically to pharmacy or a physician handwrites a prescription, medication errors can still occur. Part of the problem is that certain abbreviations used in prescriptions can be confused with other abbreviations, and, thus, they should not be used.
When a person in Florida is ill or injured, they put their faith in the expertise of the physician treating them. Unfortunately, sometimes medication errors occur. A medication error is a mistake that happens anywhere along the path of when a medication is prescribed by a physician to when the person being prescribed the drug receives it. For example, a physician may not check for allergies, may administer the wrong drug or the pharmacist could fail to read the doctor's handwriting properly.
Nothing worries a parent in Miami more than to see their child get sick. While run-of-the mill illnesses, such as ear infections and strep throat may not seem like a big deal, it is still important that children receive the right medication needed to combat the infection. If seemingly simple illnesses are not properly treated it could lead to a worsened condition that in some cases could be life-threatening.
Texting is an incredibly convenient form of communication, especially when a person only needs to make a brief comment to another person. However, texting may not be appropriate in all situations. This may especially be true when it comes to one's occupation. For example, potential safety risks to patients in Florida and nationwide arise when their prescriptions are sent to the pharmacist via text message, leading to medication errors.
People in Miami may be surprised to hear that, despite advancements in technology centralizing their medical records in one database, there is not one up-to-date record available of what medications -both prescription and over-the-counter -- they are taking, except for the knowledge the person carries him or herself. This has significant, negative consequences that could harm patients.
Entering the operating room can be frightening. People in Florida may fear that something will go wrong during the procedure that could cause them harm. They may even fear they may not survive the surgery. When a person must undergo an operation, they depend on all medical professionals involved to ensure the procedure runs smoothly and without complications.
Sometimes, a health care professional in Florida will give a patient the wrong medication, wrong dosage of a medication or will not follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer of the medication. This could mean not only that a person's illness is not being properly treated, but it could even lead to a worsened condition. While the health care professional may not have made such a mistake on purpose, the fact of the matter is that they have a duty of care to meet with respect to their patients, and this includes ensuring that medication errors do not occur.
Technology at hospitals in Miami and nationwide has come a long way. Not only have there been advancements in the treatment and diagnostic tools used by physicians and surgeons, but technology has been implemented at a basic care level. However, if this technology is not used properly, or not used at all, it could lead to medical errors that harm patients rather than help them.