Tag Archive for: Kansas Professional Liability Attorney

Kansas Pharmacy Professionals – What Are the Most Common Pharmacy Errors?

Pharmacists rely on the assistance of pharmacy technicians to ensure prescriptions are filled accurately and timely for patients.  Pharmacy technicians have close contact with patients and they are often the only people that patients end up speaking with, unless a patient specifically asks to speak with a pharmacist.  All pharmacy technicians are supposed to ask patients if they have any questions for the pharmacist about the medication they have been prescribed.  This routine ensures that both pharmacists and pharmacy technicians are providing patients with an opportunity to find out more about the medication that is being taken. 

This is only one example of how pharmacy staff members work together to provide the best care possible for patients.  When certain standards or protocols are not followed, patients are at risk for suffering harm, as described below.

Common Errors Made By Pharmacists and Pharmacy Technicians

Pharmacy errors made by both pharmacists and pharmacy technicians include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Dispensing the wrong medication to patients (i.e., by failing to confirm that the patient’s name is correct, that the patient’s date of birth is correct, and/or that the patient’s address and phone number are correct);
  • Dispensing the wrong dose of a particular medication;
  • Dispensing expired medication (i.e., failing to look at the medication’s expiration date);
  • Failing to consult with patients if there is a potential drug interaction, or drug side-effects that the patient needs to be aware of;
  • Failing to ask a patient if he or she has questions about the medication being prescribed; and
  • Failing to follow-up with the prescribing physician if information seems unclear about a particular patient’s medication.

Oftentimes, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians who make any of the errors above, do so without any negative consequence to a patient.  For example, if the wrong medication is dispensed, the patient will likely figure this out if his or her name is not actually on the prescription bottle.  However, even if the error is minor and is not likely to lead to any significant harm to patients, the potential for significant harm is enough to take every step possible to prevent any of the above errors from occurring.

It is important to understand that everyone will make a mistake at some point, and making a mistake does not in itself mean that you may be at risk for losing your Kansas professional license.  However, it is also important to have an understanding of what your rights and obligations are as a Kansas pharmacist or pharmacy technician.  With the assistance of an experienced Kansas professional license defense attorney, you will know how to address pharmacy errors and will know what action you need to take to avoid the potential loss of your professional license.

Contact Danielle Sanger of the Sanger Law Office Today to Schedule Your Free Consultation

If you are a Kansas pharmacist or pharmacy technician and your license is at risk or you are facing other disciplinary action, you should seek the advice of an experienced Kansas professional license defense attorney as soon as possible.  With your career at stake, you need an advocate by your side to help you keep your Kansas professional license.  As former Assistant Attorney General of Kansas, Danielle Sanger of the Sanger Law Office provides her clients with the best representation possible.  Danielle Sanger devotes the same amount of close attention and dedication to each and every client to ensure she is able to reach the best resolution possible that prevents the loss of a professional license.  To schedule your free consultation with Danielle Sanger, contact the Sanger Law Office today by calling (785) 979-4353.


Kansas Health Care Professionals: Protect Your License, and Beware of Medicare & Medicaid Fraud

Open the newspaper or turn on the television and you are sure to see a story about the widespread prevalence of Medicare and Medicaid fraud by health care professionals. As a result, the United States Department of Justice has made it a top priority to track down those health care professionals who have engaged in such fraudulent practices. In July, a Miami psychiatrist and six other therapists were arrested on charges that they schemed and defrauded over $60 million dollars from the Medicare program. Medicare and Medicaid fraud is not only a federal crime, it can also cost a health care professional his or her professional license. One way to protect yourself and your license is to be vigilant. The following are some of the most common Medicare/Medicaid fraud schemes plaguing health care professionals:

  1. Upcoding: Upcoding refers to a practice where heath care professionals bill Medicare/Medicaid for services or treatments that are covered by Medicare/Medicaid that the patient did not receive, in place of billing for the actual service or treatment that the patient did receive, which is not covered by Medicare/Medicaid.
  2. Waving Copayments: Another way health care professionals have defrauded Medicare/Medicaid is to waive the regular copayment for patients regardless of whether the patient meets the income requirements to do so. Once the copayment is waived the health care provider may also try to suggest treatments or tests to the patient that are unnecessary, but that the patient may go along with, since the test would be free.
  3. Increased Billing Rates for Medicare/Medicaid Patients: A simple Medicare/Medicaid fraud scheme is when Medicare/Medicaid patients are billed more for the exact same services, tests, treatments, etc. than a non-Medicare/Medicaid patient.
  4. Unbundling: Unbundling refers to a fraudulent billing practice where a Medicare/Medicaid patient is not charged once for the entire procedure, for example, a hysterectomy, but rather billed individually for the component services and procedures that comprise the surgery separately.
  5. Billing Medicare/Medicaid for DME Patient Never Received: DME or durable medical equipment refers to any medical equipment that a patient requires for his or her medical condition. DME includes wheelchairs, nebulizers, mobility scooters and moveable hospital beds. In this scheme, a health care professional charges for DME that the patient never actually receives. These items can cost upwards of tens of thousands of dollars.
  6. Billing Medicare/Medicare for Services Patient Never Received: This scheme is similar to the previously described scheme except that Medicare/Medicaid is billed for treatments or procedures that the patient did not receive. Typically, these phony charges are “hidden” amongst other charges for legitimate services that the patient actually received.

If you received notice from your licensing board that a complaint has been filed against you, it is imperative that you act quickly in order to protect your license. When you contact the the Sanger Law Office, by calling 785-979-4353, we will schedule a free and completely confidential consultation. At this consultation, the team of professionals at the Sanger Law Office will listen to you and determine the best approach to protect your livelihood and your reputation. The Sanger Law Office takes pride in providing licensees with exceptional legal services.