According to a new study from Johns Hopkins University, medical mistakes may be the third leading cause of death in the United States.
This would make medical errors a more frequent cause of death than emphysema and bronchitis, common lower respiratory diseases that can lead to death. The only two causes of death more common than medical error? Heart disease and cancer.
The doctors from Johns Hopkins who authored the study estimate that there are at least more than 251,000 deaths due to medical errors each year in the United States. They believe this number has the strong potential to be much higher as home and nursing home deaths are not counted in that total.
This statistic is staggering and can and will be very problematic for the medical community. Medical malpractice is already rampant, and with this evidence that medical error can so frequently be deadly, doctors need to be even more meticulous when it comes to diagnosing and treating patients.
This information is new because medical error is not listed as an International Classification of Disease, meaning it cannot and will not show up on a death certificate. Instead, a death due to medical error will show up as either another disease or natural causes.
Why is medical error so common? A number of factors can contribute to it. Think about how many things can potentially go wrong in an operating room or in a doctor’s head when he or she has a million other things to worry about. Some of the many factors can include communication breakdowns, diagnostic errors, poor judgment, and inadequate skills.
If you or a loved one have been involved in a medical error case, call our office today. Our attorneys have over a combined century of experience dealing with an extensive array of accident cases in and around New York City and have achieved over $100 million in settlements and verdicts to prove our success record. We have spent countless hours analyzing a wide variety of accident cases and we do everything from checking surrounding surveillance footage to speaking with expert witnesses to ensure the truth is told. We have attorneys who specialize in medical malpractice and have stellar success records helping our clients. Call our office today to figure our your next steps in your accident case. We are here to help you.