CVS apologizes for dispensing error at New York pharmacy

May 23, 2008

A CVS pharmacy in New York dispensed a chemo drug, instead of PTU, to a patient.

Viewers who continued watching Fox 5 news after the “American Idol” finale on Wednesday were told about a drug error that took place at a CVS pharmacy in Melrose, N.Y. A patient was mistakenly given mercaptopurine, a chemo drug to treat leukemia, instead of PTU (propylthiouracil) for her thyroid problem. Her liver was jeopardized and she was hospitalized for a week. She has since sued the chain for negligence and failing to advise her to seek medical help. The TV reporter noted that at the pharmacy involved, three technicians were working under the supervision of each pharmacist when state law allows only two techs per R.Ph. CVS has since issued a statement apologizing for the incident. It added that the pharmacist did contact the patient’s physician regarding her health condition, but deviated from company policy by failing to follow up with the patient after the incident.

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