The United States provides some of the best health care in the world, yet an estimated 200,000 Americans die annually due to adverse reactions and harmful side-effects of prescription drugs. Manufacturers of drugs and supplements can be held responsible for sale of defective products, devices, and drugs. This responsibility is broad and includes the duty to exercise reasonable care in the design and manufacture of a product. The obligation of the manufacturer to make a safe product includes the duty to design, manufacture, inspect, and label a product appropriately. Proving that a manufacturer of a drug supplement is responsible for a defective product can be complicated and expensive.
Our Attorneys Have the Experience You Need
The team of lawyers at Martinez Manglardi utilizes personnel and experts who have specialized knowledge concerning the design and manufacture of defective drugs and supplements. Since 1988, our firm has recovered hundreds of millions in verdicts and settlements for our clients, in cases ranging from pharmaceutical negligence to wrongful death. These verdicts and settlements have been among the highest in Florida. For questions about pharmaceutical injuries in Orlando, Orange County, Kissimmee, Osceola County, Apopka, Seminole County and throughout Florida, review our Pharmaceutical Injuries FAQs below.
About Pharmaceutical Injuries
Each year, thousands experience complications associated with over-the-counter medications and supplements. A 1995 study cited pharmaceuticals as responsible for almost 10 percent of all hospital admissions and avoidable drug induced illnesses. In addition to injuries and death, these avoidable illnesses significantly increase health care costs due to loss of income, disability claims and medical treatment.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is the federal agency responsible for regulating an estimated $1 trillion worth of products annually and pharmaceuticals represent a large percentage of these products. While the FDA must approve all prescription drugs, dollar conscious drug and medical manufacturers put unrelenting pressure on the FDA to expedite their product’s approval. In turn, the FDA may put a drug on “fast track” status to reduce approval process time. Often, “fast track” drugs are not subject to a thorough analysis and may be sold prematurely. Without a full understanding of a drug’s potential side- and long-term effects and negative interactions, patients continue to suffer serious injury or death. However, it is important to remember that while a product may be FDA approved, (FDA Report) the manufacturer and/or prescribing health care provider is liable for unsafe drugs, medications, and medical devices. The law states that:
- Drug manufacturers who fail to design, manufacture, inspect and label pharmaceuticals appropriately may be held liable. A pharmaceutical manufacturer may also be liable for a patient’s injuries when they have failed to warn of a drug’s potential side effects or dangers.
- Medical doctors, nurses, dentists, osteopaths and health care facilities (hospitals, nursing homes) can be found liable for deviating from the acceptable standard of patient care.
- Malpractice may exist if there is proof that a healthcare provider placed their personal interest or that of the pharmaceutical industry above patient’s interests. It is not only reprehensible; it is illegal for physicians to receive monetary or material gain for prescribing a specific drug.
The following drugs represent some of the more controversial and problematic products:
Paxil – Birth Defects
If you are injured by a defective drug or supplement, save the product and all parts and instructions that come with it, including the box it came in. This information may be vital to proving your case. At Martinez Manglardi, we are on your side, and can help you make informed decisions about your pharmaceutical negligence claim. Our cases are handled by a team of professionals, including nurses, doctors, engineers and other experts. We offer free consultations in your home, at the hospital or in our offices. There are no fees or costs unless we win. Contact us today at (407) 381-4123, or (407) 846-2240, or via our online contact form.
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1. I What is pharmaceutical malpractice or pharmaceutical negligence?
Pharmaceutical malpractice or negligence means that a drug company caused injury or death to a consumer by failing to act within the applicable standard of care. In other words, a drug company commits malpractice and is negligent when it fails to act reasonably under the given circumstances and the unreasonable conduct causes harm. This could be because a drug was not designed or tested properly. It could also be because the company did not provide effective and appropriate warnings to the doctors who prescribed the drug, and to the consumers who took them. For more information, please see: Pharmaceutical Injuries | Pharmacy Errors | Prescription Dangers
2. My prescription was incorrectly filled and I became very ill. Do I have a pharmaceutical negligence case?
It is possible that you have a case. Lawsuits can be based on improperly filled prescriptions. In most cases, either a medication is prescribed that contradicts a medication that the patient is already taking, or a pharmacist gives an incorrect medication or dosage. In a situation such as this, pharmacists and/or doctors would be held liable. If a person dies due to a medication, awrongful death case may be filed. If a medication causes serious illnesses or side effects during its manufacturing, the drug manufacturer is held accountable.
3. What are some of the most common drugs that can cause serious injury leading to pharmaceutical negligence?
While any drug can lead to pharmaceutical negligence if improperly handled by manufacturers, doctors or pharmacists, the following list has been known to cause serious side effects:
- Phenylpropanolamine (PPA)
4. What are some of the common causes of pharmaceutical negligence?
In the rush to get products to market, pharmaceutical companies may fail to disclose certain side effects or health risks. Other times, adequate time is not spent on clinical trials, or researchers may miss important findings that come to light only after products are on the market and harm people. Mistakes can be made in manufacturing, which may result in tainted or defective products.
5. Is there a time limit on bringing a pharmaceutical negligence claim?
Yes. Each state has its own statute of limitations establishing a deadline to pursue a negligence claim. These limits vary greatly from state to state. If you feel you are the victim of pharmaceutical negligence, you should contact an experienced pharmaceutical injury attorney at Attorneys Trial Group lawyer immediately.
6. How can I avoid a pharmaceutical injury?
When you buy over-the-counter medications, read the labels carefully because they might contain ingredients you do not want or should not take. Drugs can interact with your other medications, cause an allergic reaction, or not be correct for your symptoms. Ask your pharmacist for help if you have trouble selecting the right product or understanding ingredients.
7. What is the definition of medication error?
According to the National Coordinating Council for Medication Error and Prevention (NCCMEP) a medication error is “any preventable event that may cause or lead to inappropriate medication use or patient harm, while the medication is in the control of the health care professional, patient, or consumer. Such events may be related to professional practice, health care products, procedures, and systems including: prescribing; order communication; product labeling, packaging and nomenclature; compounding; dispensing; distribution; administration; education; monitoring; and use”.
8. I’ve been taking a drug that was not prescribed by a physician; do I still have a possible legal claim for injuries suffered?
In a case where a physician did not prescribed the drug which caused injury, but instead you purchased it on your own, you may still have a claim against the drug manufacturer. Contact an experienced pharmaceutical negligence lawyer to discuss your possible case.