Johns Hopkins Medicine did this study, and was conducted over an 8-year period. The third leading cause of death equates to 250,000 deaths per year due to medical errors.
Heart disease and cancer are the top 2 leading causes of death and they get lots of funding. “National funding is informed from our national health statistics, but those statistics don’t recognize medical care gone awry as a cause of death.” Medical mishaps are not listed on death certificates and are not part of national health statistics so they don’t get national funding.
You might be thinking, “what kind of medical errors?” or better yet, “what can I do to improve my odds?”
Listed as some of the kinds of medical errors is: Diagnostic errors, misdiagnosis, and drug mishaps. Also listed is unnecessary surgery and missing life threatening conditions like septic shock. The article goes on to state that a major contribution to the reasons listed is poorly coordinated care and inconsistencies in insurance coverage.
The answer to the question,” what can I do to prevent this from happening to me?” Advocate for yourself, bring in a family or friend to help you, or hire a Patient Advocate to ensure that the care is coordinated, you get a second diagnosis, the treatment option has been researched, the treatment plan is being followed accordingly, the proper drugs are being administered, and that people are washing their hands are just some of the things that can be addressed to ensure medical errors don’t happen to you.