If a doctor prescribed me an anti-depressant that was almost triple the dose it should have been and I overdosed, what can I can do?

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If a doctor prescribed me an anti-depressant that was almost triple the dose it should have been and I overdosed, what can I can do?

I had to go to the ER and the doctors at the hospital told me that it was not my body having an allergic reaction but an overdose. Now I am stuck with the hospital bills. Is this malpractice and is there any legal action I can or should take?

Asked on April 7, 2012 under Malpractice Law, Washington

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

It may be malpractice--malpractice is the provision  of medical care, including the prescription of medicine, which is careless or otherwise fails to  meet contemporary standards  of acceptable medical care. Proscribing you an overdose of an anti-depressant could easily be malpractice. If it was malpractice, the doctor could be liable, or financially responsible, for your medical bills, for any lost wages, and if you suffered lasting harm, for pain and suffering.

If the out-of-pocket costs (e.g. your share  of medical bills) is a few hundred dollars, it's probably not worth a lawsuit or retaining a lawyer, though you could certainly send a letter to the doctor demanding compensation and informing him or her that you may take legal action if not compensated. If the costs are several thousand dollars, it's probably worth consulting with a medical malpractice attorney to explore your options.


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