Arizona patients may be interested to learn that a study discovered that more than 4,000 preventable medical mistakes are made each and every year. These preventable mistakes, often called "never events" by researchers, are mistakes that reportedly should never occur. These mistakes can include leaving foreign objects inside patients after surgery or performing the wrong medical procedure.
In order to determine the number of never events that were estimated to have occurred annually, researchers used reports from the National Practitioner Data Bank from 1990 to 2010. Over the period of inquiry, 9,744 claims for these medical mistakes were reported. However, the researchers stated that it was likely that the number of mistakes made per year was actually higher, as many of these events go unreported.
Most hospitals have put procedures in place to prevent surgical never events. These often include ensuring that the right patient is being prepped for surgery and that all equipment, including surgical sponges, is accounted for following the procedure. Because mistakes still occur, many hospitals are working on new technologies that could prevent these events such as scanners to scan in medical equipment and a new standardized reporting system. Finally, the researchers state that the patients themselves should inquire about any concerns that they have prior to the surgery taking place.
When an Arizona patient experiences surgical errors, there is a chance that they could face serious complications and more medical expenses as a result. If a negligent surgeon caused an injury, the patient may have legitimate reason to file a medical malpractice claim against the surgeon and the hospital where the surgery took place. An attorney may help an injured patient determine whether or not they have a claim based on the associated medical records available.