Are hospital-acquired infections a major health concern? Answer YES!! Is there enough being done to protect you from infection? Answer NO!! Why are so many adverse events like hospital-acquired infections not being prevented. You go into the hospital for one thing and assume you will be kept safe from harmful bacteria, yet so often infections are acquired that should not be communicated from one patient to the other or are being undertreated or delayed in treatment.
“If a 747 jetliner crashed every day, killing all 500 people aboard, there would be a national uproar over aviation safety and an all-out mobilization to fix the problem.” However, “in the nation’s hospitals…about the same number of people die on average every day from medical ‘adverse events,’ many of them preventable errors, such as infections or incorrect medications. Where’s the outrage?” USA TODAY Editorial 11/19/10
In November 2010, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued a study that covered just the 15 percent of the U.S. population enrolled in Medicare. It found that each month one out of seven Medicare hospital patients is injured-and an estimated 15,000 are killed-by harmful medical practice. Treating the consequences of medical errors cost Medicare a full $324 million in October 2008 alone, or 3.5 percent of all Medicare expenditures for inpatient care.
Another recent study looked at the incidence of avoidable medical errors across the entire population and concluded that they affected 1.5 million people and cost the U.S. economy $19.5 billion in 2008.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have estimated that almost 100,000 Americans now die from hospital-acquired infections alone, and that most of these are preventable. Washington Monthly – March, 2011.
At Mishkind Kulwicki Law, we are safety advocates and encourage best practices by hospitals and doctors to prevent the avoidable. When medical errors occur we are there for our clients and families to hold those accountable for failing to follow the rules of safe practice. https://www.mishkindlaw.com