Overdoses Of Medications In Nursing Homes

When nursing home residents are admitted to a nursing home, there are legal requirements regarding the level of care they should receive.  As well, there is an issue of trust in that those residing in nursing homes will be receiving care that at least meets professional standards and accompanying expectations.

However, for a number of reasons, the quality of care may be negligent.  In addition to neglect, there is also the possibility of nursing home abuse.

There are numerous of areas in which neglect and abuse often occur.  One of these areas is in the administration of prescriptions and other medications.  This subject has been discussed in numerous posts on this site under the “medications” category.

As seen in these posts, the administration of medications in Illinois nursing homes, as well as those nationally, have many long-standing problematical issues.  One of these issues is when the medications are administered in the improper dosages.  This can be particularly problematical for nursing home residents, as often such drugs given to nursing home residents are “strong” in nature, yet at the same time due to age and health conditions elderly people are easily injured, if not fatally so, by overdoses and other medication errors.

One example of a fatal overdose given to a nursing home resident is seen in the April 6 StarTribune article titled “Morphine error leads to patient’s death; northwest Minnesota nursing home faulted.” Excerpts from the article include:

A nursing home in northwestern Minnesota has been cited for neglect in the case of a resident with a severe cognitive disability who died after nurses gave him 10 times his prescribed dose of morphine.


“The facility failed to have adequate policies in place to ensure medications were transcribed accurately and then administered correctly,” according to the report from the Minnesota Department of Health, which regulates nursing homes, assisted-living centers and other elder-care facilities.

Additional details regarding this fatal medication error can be seen in a variety of media sources, including the StarTribune article mentioned above.


Should someone you care for experience Illinois nursing home abuse or neglect or a nursing home accident – or suffer an injury at a similar health care facility such as an assisted living facility, retirement home, skilled nursing facility (SNF) or hospital – please contact the Elman Law Group at (773) 392-8182 to discuss the situation and to see if filing an injury lawsuit is warranted.  This no-obligation legal consultation is free and confidential.   

Elman Law Group’s Lead Attorney, Tony Elman, is a personal injury trial lawyer.  Over the last 20+ years Elman Law Group has handled over 10,000 Illinois personal injury lawsuits.

During this 20+ year period, Elman Law Group has built a reputation for its courtroom trial performance, including getting large verdicts for smaller cases.

To speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time.  This legal consultation is free and confidential.   Elman Law Group works on a “contingency” basis…Elman Law Group’s clients never pay a fee unless and until they receive monetary compensation. 

Elman Law Group, LLC handles Chicago area and other Illinois personal injury lawsuits as well as wrongful death lawsuits.