For some New Yorkers, simply making an appointment with a doctor is enough to bring on a world of stress. When that doctor makes a mistake, however, everything can change. Depending on the type of medical condition, a person’s overall health could be thrown into jeopardy. The following delves into the most common medical errors and what some advocates are doing to address this nationwide problem.
According to an article shared from MD magazine last month, nearly half of all patients admitted to intensive care units experience a medication error at the hands of a professional. While most errors did not inflict significant harm, some medications require close monitoring and dosages. More specifically, MD shares that 6 percent of these mistakes caused notable harm to the patient; high volumes of medication orders contributed to these slip-ups. Closing the article, MD states that proactive steps to reduce the number of errors included making regular ICU patient care rounds and maintaining clear communication.
CNBC broadens the aforementioned scope of medication errors, expanding discussion into medical mistakes in general. The article highlights the heartbreaking story of one family whose toddler-aged daughter died as a result of a professional’s error during cancer treatment. The little girl was one of thousands of Americans who suffer as a result of medical malpractice; CNBC goes on to state that such mistakes claim over 250,000 lives a year. Some experts claim the root of the problem lies in inadequately trained staff and faulty systems.
Not only are countless professionals going out into the medical world without proper knowledge, but the systems on which medical care heavily relies can often prove inefficient. For example, CNBC raises the issue of faulty computer systems, which can ultimately mix up medication names and dosages. While there is no single solution to the problem of medical malpractice in America, some health experts argue that there needs to be a stronger balance between healthcare providers and patients. Other experts are currently working to develop more innovative systems that will hopefully better detect mistakes in the future.