Singapore mum's shock after newborn given expired medicine by hospital

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"Will there be any adverse effect on the infant as the infant has been given the medication for a month? How could the public trust the hospital if they are dispensing expired medication?"

Singapore mum Judy Teo was worried that her 2-month-old baby wasn't getting better even though she had been having medicine prescribed by a reputed hospital. To her shock, she discovered recently that the newborn had been given expired medicine by hospital.

Baby given expired medicine by hospital

She shared about the incident on Facebook, "My daughter was prescribed with expired medication (for flu). The medication is meant to be dripped into the baby's nostrils."

"We were wondering why is it so that she did not get better despite using the medication for 1 month plus (from date of being issued till date, resting in between as instructed.)"

"Upon checking, I was horrified to find out that the medication expired on 04/18 even when the medication was prescribed on 25/08/18. She was barely one month when she was prescribed with this expired medication."

"How can KKH overlook important information like expiry date before issuing the medication to their patients, especially newborns?"

"Will there be any adverse effect on the infant as the infant has been given the medication for a month? How could the public trust the hospital if they are dispensing expired medication?"

Judy tells theAsianparent that her baby was born on 1 Aug 2018, and her birth weight was very low. She is understandably worried and frustrated about the events that happened.

Her baby is still unwell, and had to be taken to the paediatrician recently for suction of mucus and phlegm.

She also informs us that KK Hospital has reached out to her, and are sorry about what happened, "They said they will tighten the flow of dispensing medication."

"I feel that they should give a medication list upon discharge with all the information about the medicine, frequency of usage, and any special instructions. As there is confusion too on how the medication should be used."

"Anyway, a lesson learnt. Always check for expiry date in future", says Judy.

We hope hospitals can review their internal processes to avoid such mishaps in future. Here's hoping that the little baby recovers soon.

Here is Judy's post on Facebook:

How to give medicine to your child safely

It's always nerve-wrecking when it's time to give medicine to your little one. But knowing these tips will help in making the experience a safe and effective one:

  • Talk with your pharmacist or doctor about the medicine. Enquire if any side effects are to be expected.

Consult your doctor if you do notice side effects.

  • Read the instructions properly and measure the dosage carefully, and in good light.

Check the expiry dates.

Be clear on how often the medicine has to be given to the child. Also, some medicines have to be taken after eating and some, on an empty stomach.

Shake liquid medicines before giving them to your child. This is to ensure that the ingredients are evenly mixed.

  • Be very careful and specific about the dosage. Use a dosage spoon, oral syringe or dosage cup to measure and administer the right dose. Never give your child more medicine than is recommended on the label. More medicine won't help, and can harm the child.
  • If your child has been prescribed antibiotics, make sure you complete the course, even if your child seems okay. Otherwise you can't be sure that the bacterial infection is completely gone.
  • Check with the doctor or pharmacist about storage guidelines. Many antibiotics (and some other medicines) need to be refrigerated. Most other medicines need to be kept in cool places. 
  • If the symptoms of illness aren't getting any better even after the recommended time, it is best to consult your doctor again.

Also READ: KK Hospital Apologises After Toddler Dispensed Wrong Medicine

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