23 Nov 2015

Wrong medication given to depressed woman

7:16 pm on 23 November 2015

A young woman given heart medication instead of the anti-depressant pills she needed suffered worse depression as a result.

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A close-up of one version of the anti-depressant fluoxetine Photo: RBR / Science Photo Library

Deputy Health and Disability Commissioner Rose Wall has released a report that found a pharmacist with decades of experience last year dispensed the wrong medication to the 26-year-old.

She was given the heart medication Duride, which is used to treat angina, rather than the anti-depressant fluoxetine.

Over almost three months, her mood worsened, she struggled to find work and lost a key relationship.

It was a serious breach of health regulations, Ms Wall said.

"It just highlights the importance of the correct medication being dispensed. The pharmacist could provide no explanation for his error."

Read the full report (PDF, 338KB)

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