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How do medical mistakes happen?

On Behalf of | Sep 27, 2021 | blog, Medical Malpractice |

When you visit the doctor for an emergency, you expect him or her to give you the best possible care. According to MicroHealth, medical mistakes happen regularly. Medical errors have a spot in some of the leading causes of death in the U.S.

A person has a higher likelihood of suffering from malpractice due to several conditions.

Lack of sanitization

Many patients acquire infections while in the hospital. Patients within the ICU or NICU have the highest risk of developing infections. Doctors and nurses can prevent infections through standard sanitization routines. For example, washing hands between patients and ensuring the cleanliness of every room goes a long way to preventing infection.

Equipment failure

One of the most dangerous instances of malpractice occurs when a piece of equipment fails. Medical equipment has to remain in top shape at all times. Staff should check the batteries and call for regular maintenance for reassurance that the equipment will not fail. If heart defibrillators, anesthetic machines or x-rays malfunction, patients can suffer serious injuries.

Understaffing and lack of attention

When a hospital has too few staff, it can lead to significant consequences for the patient. An overworked staff may overlook important details, such as the dose of medication you require or what site the surgeon needs to operate on. Physicians may overlook symptoms that could give them the correct diagnosis. Misdiagnosis causes permanent injuries or death in more than 160,000 patients every year.

Distracted surgeons and operating staff may leave tools inside a patient’s body. One of the most common tools left behind is a surgical sponge.

Without communication, doctors and staff have a higher likelihood of making mistakes with patients.