Medical errors can be made at any point from when the doctor prescribes you a drug to when the drug is created and filled at the pharmacy. It’s important that all the small details about the drug are understood and recognized before you, as a patient, are given it to take for a medical condition. Making an error at this point could cause you serious harm, which is why it’s vital for the pharmacists and doctors to recognize all the fine print on these medications’ labels or packaging.
According to a blind survey from 2014/2015, around 90 percent of health care professionals found that they had difficulty reading the small print that was located on drug labels and packaging. Another third of health care providers knew that they had caused a medication error or nearly caused one because of this difficulty.
So, what’s the problem, and how can it be fixed? The labeling on some medications is so small that errors can be made when reading it. Fixing this is as easy as installing magnifying glasses or magnification systems in the pharmacy or doctor’s office. When prints are too small, the health care provider can then put it underneath the magnifying glass and read it more accurately, eliminating the risk to the patient. Another option would be to carry a small, pocket-sized magnification system in a lab coat pocket or in scrubs, so it’s always handy when it’s needed.
Taking the time to make simple changes like this can make patients safer. If a doctor makes a mistake because he or she fails to take simple steps to make information more visible, then a patient may have a malpractice claim.