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Posts tagged "medication errors"

Do patients underestimate the risk of medical error?

When you go into the hospital for surgery, your thoughts are likely focused on the immediate task at hand. You put your trust in the doctors and nurses who attend you, and although you are experiencing anxiety, you are probably comforted by their professionalism and the efficient way they go about prepping you for the operation. However, once the surgery is over, you find to your horror that the surgeon operated on the wrong shoulder. How could this happen?

Protecting yourself from prescription errors

One-third of adults in the United States take five or more prescription medications. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, an adverse drug event (ADE) accounts for about 700,000 emergency department visits every year. How can you ensure that the medicines you take are the right ones? By following these tips:

Testing for BCRA gene: Should insurers require a referral?

Angelina Jolie made big news a few years ago when she announced she had undergone both a prophylactic mastectomy and hysterectomy. Jolie's mother died from breast cancer and as a result, Jolie decided she wanted to know whether she, too, carried the BRCA gene--the gene that indicates a predisposition to both breast and ovarian cancer. When her diagnosis was confirmed, Jolie opted for both surgeries, ensuring that she would not meet the same fate as her mother.

Wrong patient, wrong treatment: How faulty patient identification can lead to malpractice.

It seems simple. Doctors, nurses and other hospital employees should know who they are treating before they provide treatment. Unfortunately, and with sometimes tragic results, this is not always the case. According to a study released by the ECRI Institute, hospitals make thousands of errors based on patient identification every year.

Nearly 30 percent of patients in rehabilitation hospitals are injured by medical errors

Rehabilitation hospitals provide services for people who are recovering from brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, strokes and other debilitating conditions. Patients attend these facilities on an inpatient or outpatient basis, depending on their specific needs. Rehabilitation hospitals, like every other kind of hospital, must provide proper care for their patients.

What can hospitals do to be safer?

People go to hospitals in the hopes of getting better. Unfortunately, too many people suffer or even die due to preventable acts of negligence by doctors or hospital staff. A groundbreaking study by two Johns Hopkins physicians claims that medical errors kill more than 250,000 people each year.

Too often, medication record systems fail to protect patients

The Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research, a federal agency, estimates that 5 percent of hospital patients experience harm due to a medication error. Adverse drug events lead to more than 100,000 hospitalizations every year. The agency estimates that half of these injuries could be prevented. This is scary news to any person who takes prescription medications.

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