If you never thought to double check that bottle you pick up from the prescription counter, here’s a story that will probably stick in your head the next time you’re getting a ‘scrip filled.
A pregnant woman in Colorado went to her local Safeway pharmacy to have her antibiotic prescription filled. But the medicine she ended up receiving was Methotrexate, a drug used in the treatment of cancer, but which can also be used for medical termination of pregnancy.
The woman, six-weeks pregnant with her first child, took some of the medicine under the assumption that it was the correct drug. But then she began feeling nauseous.
“I came back and I looked at the bottle and it wasn’t my name,” she said. “My doctor immediately told me to try and make myself vomit to see if I could get the medicine to come back up.”
She immediately went to the hospital where she was given charcoal to absorb the Methotrexate, which had been intended for another Safeway customer with the same last name and a similar first name.
From Safeway’s statement on the matter:
When the pharmacist became aware of what happened, he worked with the patient and with her physicians to minimize any possible health consequences to the patient and her unborn child. We have extended our sincere apologies to the customer, and offered to pay any medical expenses incurred as a result of a prescription error. We are also very concerned about how this happened and we are conducting a full and complete investigation. Safeway has pharmacy systems and processes in place to prevent this kind of occurrence.
“Sorry’s not going to cut it. I’m going to have to deal with this for a long time,” said the woman. “My baby could have deformities. There’s a lot that goes with it.”
Even though many pharmacies ask for address confirmation on prescriptions to prevent against this kind of thing, mistakes are still going to be made. So be sure to check that the medicine you’re taking actually belongs to you.
Pharmacy Mistakenly Gives Pregnant Woman Abortion Pill [The Denver Channel]
Thanks to Richard for the tip!