As Arizona residents may have heard, a recently-published book alleges that some hospitals in the United States favor influential patients. The book claims that wealthy individuals may receive special treatment. In addition, the author postulates that being hospitalized in mid-summer may be less than advantageous and possibly risky.
As people in Arizona may be aware, many medical facilities have changed from paper-based medical records to electronic ones. These electronic medical records have been touted within the healthcare industry as helping to prevent medical errors and resulting medical malpractice lawsuits. It has been demonstrated, however, that the use of the records can cause medical errors and the EMRs can actually support a finding of liability in a medical malpractice lawsuit.
As Arizona residents may know, 200,000 patients die annually because of preventable medical error. There is an effort underway to change that, but its success is often a casualty of traditional attitudes. A study published in 2005 elaborated on interactions between health care workers and documented that a layer of silence prevents mistakes from coming to light.
Arizona residents might be interested in learning more about how surgical fires have injured many patients across the country. Researchers estimate that approximately 650 of these surgical fires occur at U.S. hospitals on an annual basis. Studies indicate that there might be up to four times as many situations that could be classified as incidents that were near misses, such as smoldering being quickly extinguished. In many cases, the circumstances resulting in a medical burn may be preventable.
A survey taken of 435 emergency room physicians nationwide reveals that 97 percent of all the surveyed doctors say that they have ordered medically unnecessary tests to prevent malpractice lawsuits. These tests affect patients from Arizona and around the nation. Unnecessary tests often return "false positives" that lead to more expensive treatments for illnesses patients may not actually have or reveal undiagnosed illnesses that have yet to emerge and have no impact on the patient's present life.
Many residents of Arizona are likely to require medical care or surgery at some point in their life. When events are unforeseen and lead to the unexpected injury or death of an individual, doctor error may be to blame. While medical facilities have several sanctions in place to avoid such accidents, you or your loved ones may aim to seek legal redress against negligent health care professionals.
According to a recent analysis conducted by Kaiser Health News, Arizona is one of 13 states where at least a quarter of the hospitals showed a high infection rate for at least one type of infection tracked by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Altogether, the CDC monitors six different categories of infections that may spread in hospitals, including infections from bladder catheters, infections from antibiotic-resistant germs and infections from flexible tubes that deliver nutrients or medicines into veins.
Very few Arizona patients can expect to ever encounter a wrong-site surgery. This sort of preventable medical error is considered to be of great importance to health care facilities and practitioners, and a wide variety of procedures and protocols have been implemented to prevent it. These measures have been broadly effective. Though it has not yet proven possible to prevent all medical error completely, wrong-site surgeries and wrong-patient procedures will not happen to most patients.
Residents of Arizona who have suffered injury due to a doctor's error may wish to learn more about how medical malpractice claims work. Someone who has suffered due to medical negligence could file suit to seek two types of damages: actual damages, which cover costs such as additional medical bills and loss of wages, and punitive damages, which are imposed because of a health care provider's reckless behavior.
Arizona residents may be aware that reported cases of wrong-site surgery have been on the increase in recent years. Since the 1999 publication of a study by the Institute of Medicine about surgical errors, reports of wrong-site surgeries have increased more than tenfold. Although it is uncertain whether the increase is due to a greater number of errors, improvements in reporting or combinations of factors, individuals who have been negatively impacted by surgical errors have the option to seek legal redress for their injuries.