Arizona patients should be aware of a new EMR analysis tool that could drastically reduce the occurrence of medical errors during patient handoffs. The time at which hospital workers change shifts poses a heightened risk for medical errors since important patient information is sometimes lost from one shift to the next. How medical professionals communicate when changing shifts is a major factor in the likelihood of medical errors. Shift changes, or handoffs, present a variety of opportunities for dangerous or even fatal mistakes to be made.
Electronic medical records could reduce the number of handoff errors by providing a consistent patient record. Even if a doctor who is leaving forgets to mention an important detail to the professional taking over for him or her, a patient's electronic record would contain the relevant information. Electronic recordkeeping minimizes the risk of human error, making handoffs a safer time for patients in any medical facility.
Researchers analyzed a web-based patient record tool that improves communication between medical professionals attending patients on different shifts. The tool scans the patient's EMR for priority information, which it then compiles in a separate highlight document for easy perusal. The study found that medical errors were cut down by 50 percent since the hospital began using the tool.
Hospital negligence can lead to serious, life-long consequences for injured patients. Victims of medical malpractice may be eligible to receive compensation for any physical or emotional damages they sustained as a result of a medical error. A medical malpractice attorney may be able to provide case evaluation and recommendations for filing an effective lawsuit. From medical bills to pain and suffering, there are a variety of damages for which malpractice victims may be eligible.