Ohio residents will have a basic understanding that there is a chance that a doctor error can cause injury and death, even in the most benign circumstances. The scope of the problem is far worse than people were led to believe. Recent research has shown that a fatal medical error is the third most common cause of death in the nation. The study, from Johns Hopkins University, says that at least a quarter-million people die because of medical mistakes.
This study places the numbers on the lower end of the spectrum. Another report in the Journal of Patient Safety says that there could be up to 440,000 deaths after a fatal medical error. These numbers were the impetus of a documentary that was featured in Cleveland called, "To Err is Human."
The director of the film says that these problems have been happening consistently over the years, but few had paid attention to it. In the past, it was difficult to differentiate between a person who died because of a medical mistake or due to their medical issues. The film's title comes from a 1999 study that said nearly 100,000 people died annually because of medical mistakes. The recent studies show the increase is troublesome.
In Cleveland, one hospital is changing its method of training staff from the top to bottom to avoid these mistakes. Staff is reporting errors to reduce their frequency. The goal is to find the areas in which mistakes are made and take the necessary steps to tamp down on them.
Despite the newfound vigilance, some facilities are still making mistakes and not taking the initiative in prevention and responsibility. Patients are advised to be vigilant for themselves and loved ones by asking questions, being proactive about cleanliness and having help from friends and family members to ensure care is meeting the proper standards.
When a loved one is in a medical facility and dies, it can be difficult to know whether it was because of a mistake on the part of the staff. These incidents can occur when the medical issue that spurred the initial need for treatment is relatively simple and routine or when it is something more complicated. People whose loved one has died and there is a belief that it was due to medical malpractice must know their rights and seek assistance from a law firm that is experienced in investigating and pursuing compensation after a death because of medical mistakes.