How Safe is Your Hospital?

Date:February 17, 2014

If your doctor wants to admit you to a hospital for a needed medical procedure, would you refuse? Probably not.  But consider this: a recently published study estimates that 210,000 hospital patients die each year from preventable medical errors, roughly equivalent to 365 jumbo jet disasters.

That puts medical errors as the third leading cause of death in the United States after heart disease and cancer. Refusing care is not an option for most, but you should know how patient safety can help you survive a hospital stay. For information on your local hospital’s safety rating, go to http://www.leapfroggroup.org/

What you Can Do

while providers and policymakers debate how to address the “epidemic of patient harm in hospitals” as reported in Patient Safety, what can you do to protect yourself and those you love from health care errors? Plenty, according to the Joint Commission, starting with awareness and a willingness to SPEAK UP:

  • Speak up, ask questions, and ask again if you don’t understand. Know what to expect before and after a procedure, and if something changes, ask why.
  • Pay attention and get the right treatments and medications by the right people; don’t assume anything.
  • Educate yourself about your medical history: diagnosis, medical tests and treatment plan.
  • Ask an assertive, informed family member to be there as your advocate and ask tough questions if you can’t.
  • Know what medications you take and why. Bring a list including supplements and allergies.
  • Use a hospital that has undergone rigorous on-site evaluation. Visit Medicare’s Hospital Compare, The Joint Commission’s Quality Check and Leapfrog’s Hospital Safety Score.
  • Participate aggressively in your treatment. Ask doctors and nurses to wash their hands before touching you; check ID bracelets before treatments and medication; and label a procedure site with permanent marker.

Request A
free consultation

  • Please leave this field empty.
  • I understand the
  • captcha
Personal Injury Lawyer Manchester NH

Download Your Free Book Now!

Immediately get the answers to questions about your case.

Thank You