Medicare: 1 in 7 patients is harmed during hospitalization
'Hospitals are dangerous places, rife with infection and opportunities for errors'
According to a new report by the Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services, about 15,000 Medicare patients per month experience a complication or error while hospitalized that contributes to death.
During the month-long study that was the basis for the report, 134,000 Medicare patients suffered at least one adverse event while hospitalized, and an astounding 44 percent of those errors were preventable.
Dr. Donald Berwick, a patient safety advocate, seemed to suggest that the best way to avoid hospital errors is to avoid hospitals. He said, "Better primary care can reduce the chances that people end up in the hospital." From the government's perspective the hospital error rate is so bad that, in 2008, Medicare started a new program to refuse to pay hospitals for the extra care and treatment required for patients who suffer preventable hospital-based injuries.
The medical malpractice attorneys at Painter Law Firm represent patients and their families who have suffered from preventable hospital errors. Call us at 281-580-800 for a complimentary evaluation of your potential case.
HHS Inspector General Report: http://oig.hhs.gov/oei/reports/oei-06-09-00090.pdf
Robert Painter is an attorney and member of Painter Law Firm PLLC.
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