Doctor under fire for excessive dosage
A doctor who put a patient in the emergency room by prescribing an excessive dose of a painkiller has been found wanting by the health watchdog.
Health and Disability Commissioner Anthony Hill today released the findings of an investigation into a GP who had gave a patient 100mcg patches of the medication fentanyl instead of the 12.5mcg dose she had been taking.
The woman was prescribed the drug during her recovery from spinal fusion surgery and was given the massive up-size in dosage after visiting her local GP for a top-up prescription.
Shortly after putting on one of the larger patches, she became nauseous and began vomiting, before rushing to the emergency department.
Mr Hill found the doctor "recklessly" prescribed an excessive dose to the woman and failed to warn her about the side-effects of fentanyl during an appointment.
He recommended the GP take part in document training and a performance assessment.
While the medical centre has not been held liable, Mr Hill recommended the centre review its record-keeping processes.