Prescription Error Results in Clinical Negligence Settlement

Mrs W was an elderly patient who experienced difficulties with reading. She received her regular medications in a blister pack, which separated her tablets into days of the week and times of the day to assist her in taking her medications correctly.

Although the blister pack was labelled with dosage instructions, Mrs W’s reading difficulties meant that she did not follow the medication instructions from the label; rather she followed the way in which the blister pack was separated to know when to take which tablet.

In December 2013, Mrs W ordered her next batch of medications from her usual pharmacy. When the pack arrived, there were only pink tablets in each section. Mrs W recognised the pink tablets as Rosuvastatin medication – a medication she had been taking for some time, once a day.

Being used to taking her medications as they were set out for her in the blister packs, Mrs W did as was instructed by the new blister pack and proceeded to take only pink tablets, four times a day. This resulted in her taking four times the recommended dose of the tablets.

By the third day of taking the tablets as instructed by the blister pack, Mrs W was feeling very unwell. Her mouth was swollen and very red. She felt dizzy and drowsy and was vomiting.

She attended the walk-in centre and was immediately admitted to hospital and placed on a drip due to dehydration. She remained in hospital for three days, following which it took several weeks for her mouth to settle.

Mrs W instructed Nelsons Solicitors to pursue a claim in clinical negligence against the pharmacy for the negligent preparation of her medication blister pack.

Liability was denied but the defendant made an offer to settle the claim, which Mrs W accepted.

The family was represented by Danielle Young. If you would like more information or advice on pursuing a medical negligence claim, please contact Danielle on 0800 024 1976 or email