Something unfortunate happened, folks helped to ensure it doesn't happen again and I learned something very important through this.
Lil O caught a cough and some congestion a while back. We were prescribed an inhalation medication, which I duly picked up from our closest pharmacy in Sept 2012. We began administering that medication in her nebulizer. One week later, her cough did not let up. For no particular reason, I took a look at the medication box and to my horror found that the medication had expired as of Feb 2012. Yet it had been sold to us by the pharmacist in Sept 2012.
Ofcourse, the pharmacy did make up for the error (they too took the matter as gravely as I did) and I do believe it was an unfortunate oversight. Nevertheless, it put my hapless toddler under considerable health risk. Thank God alone that the expired medication was rendered ineffective and not harmful.
The questions that beats me up though were:
- What if it had been harmful?
- As a parent who is ultimately responsible for her child, why did I not look at the expiration of all medication that I administer to my child?
- Why didn't the pharmacist look at the obvious date on the box?
- How many children are currently using the same product from the lot that I was sold?
I am asking you to please monitor the dates on all your children's medication/children's food and supplements. We are all human and can make a mistake (costly or otherwise) - parent, doctor, teacher, caregiver, pharmacist etc all alike.
My daughter was a champ and she recovered well.
Disclaimer: I still shop with that pharmacy for all our medication. The team at the pharmacy spent an afternoon going through the inventory of that particular medication and concluded that it was just that one box that they had and unfortunately sold to me. They replaced the medication immediately and gave me a little something to placate my frayed nerves.
I have withheld the name of the pharmacy because mistakes happen and I am sharing God's Grace that nothing happened to my lil O with that pharmacist who would have otherwise tainted his record or lost his job.