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Walgreens held accountable for infant’s death

On Behalf of | Sep 6, 2022 | Firm News

The attorneys at Zane D. Smith & Associates obtained a victory on behalf of our client, Ms. Quatanya Seals, against the pharmaceutical giant, Walgreens. In this case of a terrible medication error, we helped to ensure our client secured justice.

A long fight leaves Walgreens held responsible

Our client, Ms. Seals suffered an unimaginable tragedy. In 2015, her infant daughter died due to an overdose of a prescription of Lovenox, provided by Walgreens.

There were several issues surrounding the prescription. Walgreens provided pre-filled syringes of the medication, and the specific issues at hand were:

  • Incorrect dosage: The doctor’s prescription was for 0.123 milliliters of Lovenox every 12 hours. Walgreens filled the syringes with 0.3 milliliters.
  • No measurements: These pre-filled syringes did not mark any measurements to indicate the amount of Lovenox within them.

Ms. Seals, therefore, filed a claim that Walgreens’ negligence led to the death of her child. Our attorneys fought side by side with Ms. Seals – and against Walgreens’ continual denials that they were at fault.

After several challenges, the appellate court overturned the dismissal of Ms. Seals’ claims in 2021. We finally achieved a verdict in Ms. Seals’ favor, determining Walgreens was indeed responsible, and that their negligence resulted in the death of Ms. Seals’ child.

A turning point in accountability

This ruling was a significant triumph for Ms. Seals. She deserved justice for the unthinkable tragedy she suffered because of Walgreens’ negligence – and she achieved it.

However, her case may also be a turning point regarding pharmaceutical liability. Most pharmaceutical companies rely on the “learned intermediary doctrine” for their defense. This doctrine essentially states that if a physician, or a “learned intermediary,” is informed of the risks, then the company is not liable. It leaves the duty to inform patients on the “learned intermediary,” not the company. This is the defense Walgreens attempted to use in this case.

The ruling in Ms. Seals’ case denied that excuse. It could have a considerable effect on the way companies rely on this defense for protection against taking accountability for the harm they cause to individuals and their families.