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California Tells Hospitals To Report Errors

Armen Hareyan's picture
Hospital Adverse Events and Errors

California hospitals are found to have many adverse events that in the past have not been reported or required to be made public. Now a new law requires all hospitals to post these adverse events and hospital errors on the internet.

A new report by California Department of Public Health examined the situation in California hospitals during the past 10 months and found that there have been about 1002 adverse events and hospital errors during this period.

Adverse hospital events are also called never events, because these events are preventable and they should never happen. Among these events are mainly those when doctors make simple mistakes during surgeries, which result in serious health complications for patients.

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Among reported cases of hospital adverse events and errors there have been 41 occasions when doctors performed surgical operations on wrong parts of body of wrong patients. Another 145 cases occurred because foreign objects like surgical tools were left inside patient's body after the surgery. Lots of patients were given wrong medications, which were never ever prescribed to them.

These cases are leading to serious health complications for innocent patients and urgent measures are needed to prevent these adverse hospital events. There are already seven states which protect suffered patients from paying for medical errors, but the number of such states is very low.

California has now issued legislation, under which all California hospitals are required to post medical errors on the internet by 2015, so that health officials and patients have access to information on adverse events. What if the hospital does it on 2014, what happens until then and how many adverse events will go unreported?

The information will be made public in the website of the California Department of Public Health.