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Medical negligence accounts for thousands of deaths each year

Medical professionals and facilities provide life-saving services to millions of people living in Long Beach, California, and beyond. In fact, most people count on physicians and other medical providers to make sound decisions and perform at the best of their abilities at all times. The truth is, however, that even doctors and nurses make mistakes, and such errors can have deadly consequences. New evidence suggests that fatal accident incidents in the hospital environment may be much more prevalent than ever estimated before.

While many people think of hospitals as places of healing, the health or safety of thousands of patients is actually compromised by being admitted to the hospital. Though, it’s difficult to gauge just how prevalent incidences of fatal medical negligence and mistakes are because they go unreported in many cases. Another major issue is that patient medical records often fail to identify injury and/or illnesses caused by provider error. That’s why any new data on the subject of patient care and safety is scrutinized by the medical community.

One recent study conducted by a leading toxicologist and patient rights advocate offers some alarming numbers. According to the study, around 200,000 to 450,000 patients die each year as a result of detrimental treatment they receive in the hospital. The findings suggest that deaths related to medical mistakes may account for more than 15 percent of all deaths in the country annually.

In the course of conducting the study, millions of medical records were reviewed to identify incidents of injury, infection, and errors in care. The particular method used to review medical records in the survey is being praised and criticized by many in the medical community, as some claim this study reveals the true prevalence of medical malpractice in America and others contend that it over exaggerates the issue.

Source: kcur.org, “How Many Die From Medical Mistakes In U. S. Hospitals?” Sep. 24, 2013

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