Medical errors are responsible for injury in as many as 1 out of every 25 hospital patients; an estimated 48,000-98,000 patients die from medical errors each year. This means that more people die from medical errors than from motor vehicle accidents, breast cancer, or AIDS. Errors in health care have been estimated to cost more than $5 million per year in a large teaching hospital, and preventable health care-related cost the economy from $17 to $29 billion each year.
What are Medical Errors?
Medical errors happen when something that was planned as a part of medical care doesn't work out, or when the wrong plan was used in the first place. Medical errors can occur anywhere in the health care system: • Hospitals. …show more content…
This research on systemic problems leads investigators to conclude that any effort to reduce medical errors in an organization requires changes to the system design, including possible reorganization of resources by top-level management.
Improving Patient Safety
Research funded by AHRQ and others has been important in identifying the extent and causes of errors. Now, additional research is needed to develop and test better ways to prevent errors, often by reducing the reliance on human memory. Some areas of past research that have shown promise in helping to reduce errors include computerized ADE monitoring, computer-generated reminders for followup testing, and standardized protocols.
Computerized ADE Monitoring
Although chart review was found in an AHRQ-funded study to be more accurate than computer tracking and