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Hospital Errors Occur 10 Times More Than Reported, Study Finds

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marmar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-07-11 07:35 AM
Original message
Hospital Errors Occur 10 Times More Than Reported, Study Finds

(Bloomberg) Hospitals and U.S. regulators fail to record at least 90 percent of patient injuries, infections and other safety issues, a study found.

A review uncovered 354 so-called adverse events, such as pressure sores, bloodstream infections and medication errors, at three U.S. teaching hospitals. A system designed by the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality identified 35 cases at the same facilities while the hospitals voluntary reporting programs found four, according to the study, published in the journal Health Affairs.

An incomplete picture of how often patients are harmed undermines public and private efforts to improve the quality of medical services in the U.S., David Classen, a professor at the University of Utah School of Medicine in Salt Lake City, and his co-authors conclude.

Hospitals that use such methods alone to measure their overall performance on patient safety may be seriously misjudging actual performance, the researchers wrote. Reliance on such methods could produce misleading conclusions about safety in the U.S. health-care system and could misdirect patient-safety improvement efforts. ............(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-04-07/hospital-error...



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xchrom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-07-11 07:46 AM
Response to Original message
1. recommend
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Overseas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-07-11 07:47 AM
Response to Original message
2. Sad K&R.
The profit motive also clouds the picture.

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Lasher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-07-11 08:03 AM
Response to Original message
3. Some people want to reduce malpractice lawsuit limits.
But many of these same people never stop to think that we need to reduce malpractice itself.

Good article.
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Scuba Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-07-11 08:34 AM
Response to Original message
4. I worked in three dozen hospitals measuring quality over 32 years.....
Edited on Thu Apr-07-11 08:41 AM by Scuba
...so I believe I have something to say on this issue.

I've worked in inner city hospitals, rural hospitals, large multi-hospital systems, clinics, home health agencies, and just about every other area involved in health care delivery. I've been responsible for focused (e.g., ER's, OR's Cardiac Services) and system-wide quality studies.

I've been privileged to work with many, many healthcare professionals dedicated to improving every aspect of healthcare. People who believe "patient-centered care" is more than a marketing expression.


Yes,there are "bad" people in the field of medicine. There are "bad" hospitals. These two facts are irrefutable.

But thirty-five years ago concepts like "continuous improvement" and "circle of excellence" were virtually unknown. Today they are ingrained, often deeply, in every hospital I've been in.


While much improvement is being made, there is still room for criticisms. However, I sense something beyond that. I believe there is a deliberate attempt to demean and degrade hospitals, so many of which are not-for-profit, and other healthcare workers. I see this as a part of a massive effort to demean those who work for a living in all walks of life. Tin foil hat, maybe. But that's just me.

But don't blame the nurse on the unit trying to manage an ever-increasing patient load. Don't blame the phlebotomist trying to collect specimens faster and faster. Don't blame the not-for-profit hospital trying to break even while being further squeezed by the insurance companies.

Blame the "system" that gives an enourmous cut of our healthcare dollars to the owners and executives of insurance companies before any care is delivered.


(subject edited for clarity, text for spelling)

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Tippy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-07-11 09:09 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. Well stated
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REP Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-08-11 03:52 AM
Response to Reply #4
8. Kinda had not to blame the resident who tries to give a nephrotic patient a Toradol injection
Edited on Fri Apr-08-11 03:53 AM by REP
Especially when "nephrotic syndrome" and "FSGS" are all over the patient's chart.

While anecdotes are not data, my own experiences with hospital care have been so life-threatening I tend to think there is a real problem.
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Scuba Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-08-11 04:17 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. There is a real problem, to be sure.
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Mnemosyne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-07-11 08:30 PM
Response to Original message
6. I am a walking example of them missing two out of three fractures of my ankle...
in 2001; until 2006.
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Manifestor_of_Light Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-08-11 03:42 AM
Response to Original message
7. Malpractice lawsuits are NOT the problem.
The problem is the failure of the state medical boards to discipline and regulate doctors.
Most malpractice is caused by a small percentage of doctors. They get sued and don't get suspended or disciplined. They just move to another state and keep practicing.

The insurance companies promised the doctors that if tort reform was enacted, the doctors' malpractice insurance premiums would go down. That didn't happen.

I say this as a person who worked in the legal system as a court reporter for twenty years.
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Scuba Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-08-11 04:17 PM
Response to Reply #7
10. I concur. n/t
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