Pregnancy should be a time of excitement, a time for celebrating the upcoming birth of a child. Most parents understand the risks of pregnancy, and they rely on their doctors, nurses and pharmacists to help them overcome any obstacles. However, when health care professionals make mistakes, unexpected problems can be introduced to the equation.
Because of a prescription error, a pregnant woman is now left wondering whether her unborn baby will suffer serious health problems. When Mareena went to the pharmacy to pick up her antibiotics, she was given the wrong prescription. At six weeks pregnant, she was given Methotrexate. The drug is used primarily for chemotherapy patients, but it is also used as an abortion drug.
According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, the side effects of Methotrexate can be very serious. The warnings even include a specific clause for pregnant women, stating to exercise extreme caution because the medication can harm the fetus.
Mareena was given the abortion drug mistakenly because she had a similar name to the woman who was supposed to receive that prescription. When such a potent drug is prescribed, it would seem logical for the pharmacist to be overly cautious. Many pharmacists in New York take the time to make sure patients understands what drugs they are receiving, and they explain the side-effects or potential dangers to the patient. Perhaps if more caution had been taken by that pharmacy, Mareena would not be left wondering about the health of her unborn baby.
The great debate about medical malpractice liability has again taken center stage after President Obama raised the issue in his State of the Union Message. The health care providers who support liability reform think that they should not be held accountable when they hurt a patient. And they want to substitute the wisdom of the Founding Fathers who put a right to a trial by jury in the Bill of Rights attached to the Constitution. In trying to cap jury awards they want to substitute a government bureaucrats decision in place of the people who sit on juries.
Source: The Huffington Post, “Mareena Silva Accidentally Given Abortion Drug By Pharmacy,” 7 February 2011