Issue: January 2014
This Report is Over 50 Pages. See Below for Previews of the 16 Articles in the Report.
Need this Report? Click Here to Login or Buy.
Or, click any article title.

Already a subscriber? Log in and beginning reading.

Prescription Painkillers: Risks for Patients, Pharmacists, and Physicians

Introduction

Painkiller Risks and Liability Issues

Physicians have increased their prescription of powerful opioid analgesics in recent years to the extent that tens of millions of these medications are now being prescribed. The widespread use of prescription pain medication has led to abuses and such adverse health consequences as increases in emergency department visits, substance abuse treatment admissions, and unintentional overdose deaths.

 

In 2010, it was estimated that 16,651 people died due to inappropriate use of prescription opioid drugs, which was a 313 percent increase over the past ten years. The Food and Drug Administration has initiated efforts to curb the abuse of prescription painkillers.

 

Attorneys, physicians, insurers, and others should be aware of the types of lawsuit that may arise, and the defenses available when an injury related to the prescription or administration of pain medication occurs.


The Perspectives: Improve Your Strategy

Attorneys:

What proof is needed to establish medical malpractice or negligence for an injury resulting from prescription pain medication? And, what is a potential strategy for the attorney to employ?

Physicians:

How can liability for medical malpractice be avoided for an injury involving prescription pain medication? And, what is a potential strategy for the physician to employ? 

Insurers:

Can a payout under a medical malpractice liability policy be avoided by proof that the health provider was not negligent or there was no coverage for the injury resulting from prescription pain medication? And, what is a potential strategy for the insurer to employ?

Employers:

Can an employer be subject to liability for an injury caused by painkillers prescribed to an employee? And, what is a potential strategy for the employer to use?


Practice the Technique: Checklists

Attorneys:

Check this list of facts and circumstances tending to show a physician’s liability for malpractice or negligence for prescribing painkillers.

Physicians:

A physician should review the items on this list when defending against claims of malpractice or negligence involving prescription painkillers.

Insurers:

The insurer should check these “red flags” and inconsistencies when investigating a claim of injury resulting from prescription painkillers.

Employers:

Use this checklist to determine if the employee’s injury resulting from prescription painkillers is “work related” and occurred “in the course of the employment.”

Expert Analysis

How Can Physicians, Patients and the Public Be Educated Effectively on Prescription Pain Medication?

Molly Cooke, MD

What Methods of Pain Management Can Be Effective Along with (or Instead of) Prescription Pain Relievers? 

Bob Twillman, PhD

How Should Physicians Monitor Patients and Keep Appropriate Documentation?

Michael A. Moroney, JD

Litigation

Reasons To Reach Settlement

The following are reasons why the attorney, physician, insurer, or employer would want to reach settlement, and not take the action to trial.


Reasons To Go To Trial

The following are reasons why the attorney, physician, insurer, or employer would want to take the action to trial.


Alternative Dispute Resolution

Arbitration or mediation may be required by contract or statute, mandated by the court or, in some circumstances, may be the appropriate method for a negotiated resolution.


Jury Awards and Settlements

How much have juries awarded and what settlements have been reached recently in cases involving painkiller or opiate prescriptions?



Medical Examples

Pain Medication and Opiates

This section provides detailed medical information on pain and treatment options, such as opiates and alternatives to drugs. Included are an overview, the types and classifications of pain, the mechanism of pain transmission and sensation, the diagnosis of pain and the possible underlying causes, treatment and pain control, and a discussion of the patient’s prognosis, ability to work, and the impact of pain on daily life.



Law and Medicine Resources

Law and Medicine Resources

Provided is a listing of law and medical resources for further information on painkiller medication liability.


Purchase This Report




Prescription Painkillers: Risks for Patients, Pharmacists, and Physicians

Table of Contents
Introduction

Expert Analysis
   Molly Cooke, MD
   Bob Twillman, PhD
   Michael A. Moroney, JD

The Perspectives: Improve Your Strategy
   Attorneys
   Physicians and Health Providers
   Insurers
   Employers and Risk Managers

Practice the Technique: Checklists
   Attorney Checklist
   Physician Checklist
   Insurer Checklist
   Employer Checklist

Reasons To Reach Settlement

Reasons To Go To Trial

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Jury Awards and Settlements

Pain Medication and Opiates

Law and Medicine Resources