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Medication Errors Archives

Electronic medical records have led to medical mistakes

Though keeping electronic medical records on file was designed to make hospitals more efficient and improve on the level of care, there can be a variety of problems with this sort of system as well. For example, the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center's system recently crashed for a number of hours. Fortunately, the hospital had an alternate database that had patient's files available to remedy the problem.

Most medication errors occur during administration

Most medication errors occur during administration of the drugs. Many medications are being administered by IV, and since many are administered by using a number of doses and varying timings, the chance that a medication error could occur is great.

Government Wants Patients to Report Medical Mistakes

The federal government is planning to provide patients with the opportunity to report medical mistakes directly to them. Under the plan patients would be given a questionnaire that they can fill out and send back to the government whenever they are a victim of a medical mistake. The mistakes to be reported can be anything from a drug mistake, surgical error, infection or failure to properly diagnose or treat a condition. See http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/news/health/feds-want-patients-to-report-medical-provider-mistakes-654522.

Pittsburgh hospital implicated in hepatitis scare

The story of the former medical technician accused of stealing narcotics and possibly being responsible for an outbreak of hepatitis C apparently at one time worked for a Pittsburgh hospital. That hospital is now being sued for medical malpractice and negligence by a woman who allegedly contracted hepatitis C.

Medical providers need to take steps to avoid medication errors

According to the ECRI Institute for the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority (PPSA), doctors often prescribe medications before being aware that the patient is also taking another medication that may result in an adverse reaction. Unfortunately, it was also reported that such medication errors involved controlled substances that could lead to more severe consequences.

More treatment leads to more medical mistakes

The Institute of Medicine claims that the number of patients dying from medical mistakes in Pennsylvania and across the United States has almost doubled in recent years. Whether or not this is entirely true depends upon the accuracy of statistics generated by each individual state. There is no universal way of making the determination because each state records medical errors differently.

Doctor experience does not always prevent medical errors

A professor at the University of Pennsylvania has noted that experience in and of itself does mean the doctor is less prone to error. Doctors often rely on anecdotal evidence concerning what has worked in the past, but such physicians have not always kept up with what is current in the medical field.

Medication errors often due to improper warnings

Researchers are suggesting that changes be made to the manner in which warning labels are applied to prescription medications. It appears that current labeling practices may not result in catching the attention of the individual taking the medication, and this has resulted in a variety of medication errors.

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