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Medical Law Firm in South Africa

When is a Prescription Drug Error Malpractice in South Africa?

Prescription drug errors and overprescription of medicine are forms of medical malpractice when such have caused physical harm to patients. An experienced medical law firm in South Africa will be able to help you determine if the mistake made was indeed malpractice.

If you believe that your doctor has overprescribed or wrongly prescribed medicine, and you have suffered harm as the result, we recommend seeking legal guidance from an attorney specialising in medical law. Adele van der Walt heads up such a medical law firm in South Africa and is able to assist.

Various types of prescription medicine mistakes exist, such as prescribing the wrong type of medication, administering the wrong drug or the incorrect dosage, mislabelling the medicine, or prescribing a medicine to which the patient is allergic.

Other types include:

  • Not considering other medication that the patient uses, and which may interact with the prescribed medicine.
  • Administering a medication for a condition, which the test results have shown is negative.
  • Failure to warn the patient of common or severe side effects of a particular drug.

As the team at Adele van der Walt’s medical law firm in South Africa will explain, any medical caregiver involved in the prescription and administering of medicine can be held liable for the harm caused by the mistake. This means that the doctor who prescribed the medicine, the medical personnel who mislabelled the medicine and the health worker who administered the drug can be held accountable, depending on the particular circumstances and prescription error.

How common are prescription errors?

Prescription errors are far more common than most people realise. A health worker can read the instructions incorrectly or make a mistake while administering the medication. A doctor may be in a hurry and fail to ask about the patient’s medical history and allergies before prescribing medication. The same holds true for not informing a patient about possible side effects or not considering how the medicine can react with other prescription drugs.

A patient may suffer harm when a health worker administers the particular medication incorrectly. Some drugs must be injected into the blood stream, others in the muscle, etc. It is essential to follow the correct procedure when administering medicine. Failure to do so can cause physical harm and even death.

How to know if it is malpractice

Not all mistakes are malpractice. It is often difficult to prove malpractice and it is thus recommended to make use of a medical law firm in South Africa that has extensive medical litigation experience to help you get compensation for damages suffered as the result of malpractice.

It is only malpractice if you have experienced harm as the result of the incorrect prescription or administration of the medication. The circumstances of the wrongful action must be considered and the requirements for malpractice must be met.

Many questions must be answered to determine whether it was malpractice. The first step towards getting compensation for the damages suffered is to make an appointment with an attorney at a medical law firm in South Africa to help you determine the merits of your particular case. Contact Adele van der Walt Incorporated today.


Information in this article is not intended as legal advice and is only for informational purposes. Please seek legal guidance from Adele van der Walt before relying on this information to make any legal decisions.

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