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Amputation Settlement Highlights Need for Medical Oversight

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Medical mistakes can result in death, amputations, and unnecessary procedures, highlighting the need for oversight to prevent medical mishaps. Errors can dramatically affect the quality of life for patients and their families. Medical malpractice lawyers can provide answers during a painful recovery due to medical errors.

In September of 2008, Mullings went to the emergency room and was diagnosed with kidney stones and sent home. Mullings called 911 twice the following day due to extreme pain and numbness. Medics did not take her back to the hospital. Instead, her fiancé took her to a different hospital.

Sepsis infection had already spread through her body. Tabitha Mullings woke from a coma to find herself blind in one eye and missing her hands and her feet. Experienced medical malpractice lawyers can help ensure patients' rights are protected in these situations.

Oversight is Necessary as Medical Errors Become a Major Cause of Death

A study led by Johns Hopkins surgeon Dr. Martin Makary estimated that medical errors result in the deaths of around 250,000 Americans each year. The leading causes of death, according to the study, were:

  • Heart disease (around 600,000)
  • Cancer (around 600,000)
  • Medical errors (around 250,000)
  • Respiratory disease (around 150,000)

The National Patient Safety Foundation also reported patient harm as the third leading cause of death in the US.

Medical mistakes cause a broad range of issues, from death to surgical complication to incorrect medication. It is clear that oversight is required to report medical errors.

A Data Collection Method Needed

Tracking errors can improve public recognition of the problem. Collecting more detailed cause of death data can help prevent mistakes in the future. Statistics published by the CDC only count the underlying cause of death, and do not include medical errors.

There is no single method for reporting medical mistakes in the United States at this time. Diagnostic errors, poor judgment, and communication breakdowns can have a profound impact on patients' lives. Researchers are now calling for increased oversight to curb the increasing cost of medical errors.

http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2016/05/03/476636183/death-certificates-undercount-toll-of-medical-errors

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