THE DUTY OF PHARMACISTS

DESCRIPTION

The firm filed suit on behalf of the survivors of a patient whose death “resulted from the adverse effects of multiple medications (drugs like at Xarelto lawsuits), especially Placidyl (ethchlorvynol), which was near the toxic range.” Our firm alleged the defendant pharmacy, through its pharmacist, was negligent by filling several prescriptions for the decedent when it knew, or should have known, that the decedent would be exposed to the risk of serious bodily harm or death.

Specifically, we argued the prescriptions, as written by the physician, were for excessive dosages and for drugs that were incompatible. The trial court entered a summary judgment in favor of the pharmacy prior to the trial based on the fact that the pharmacy filled the prescriptions as written by the doctor and that it only had a duty to fill the prescriptions as written by the doctor.

In what is now considered a landmark decision, the Missouri Court of Appeals reversed the trial court and ruled that pharmacists have a duty well beyond the mere filing of a prescription by the doctor as written. In making its ruling the Court stated: “We reject the suggestion in Kampe that the only functions which a pharmacist must perform to fulfill his duty is to dispense drugs according to the physician’s prescription.” This decision has been cited in numerous cases and has clearly established the standard of care for pharmacists in the State of Missouri.

RESULT

LANDMARK COURT DECISION HOLDING MISSOURI PHARMACISTS TO A HIGHER RESPONSIBILITY