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Doctors and nurses underreport their mistakes

Posted On behalf of Michael D'Amico of D'Amico & Pettinicchi, LLC on Sep 20, 2013 in Medical Malpractice

A medical error represents a consequence of the medical practice that health care professionals most fear. The Institute of Medicine released the results of a study that revealed approximately 75,000 unnecessary deaths that occur annually in the United States due to medical errors, also referred to as medical malpractice. In addition to the deaths attributed to medical malpractice, over one million patients are injured because of medical error each year. Presumably, a proportional amount of these injuries and deaths occur in Connecticut on an annual basis.

Experts suggest that all health care practitioners make mistakes at some juncture in their careers. A good portion of these mistakes go unreported. Indeed, a survey indicates that over 30 percent of doctors and nurses underreported almost 50 percent of their medical decisions they viewed to be in error. In addition to being unethical, the failure to report prevents the medical community from learning how to avoid certain mistakes in the future. Moreover, patients oftentimes end up being left uninformed about important issues surrounding their care.

In the aftermath of the research study, medical practitioners are advised to notify a patient care team immediately after an error occurs. The theory is that a medical professional can best contain damage associated with a medical error by being more forthright about its occurrence in the first place.

A Connecticut medical malpractice attorney may aid a client dealing with the aftermath of a medical error or doctor mistake in a number of different ways. A medical malpractice attorney may oversee negotiations to reach a settlement with a doctor's insurance carrier. In addition, a Connecticut personal injury attorney could pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit, with all of its complexities, on behalf of an injured client.