Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-99c86f546-qdp55 Total loading time: 0.291 Render date: 2021-12-07T16:19:20.736Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": true, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true, "newEcommerce": true, "newUsageEvents": true }

5 - What You Need to Know about Medical Errors

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 June 2012

Get access

Summary

Recent studies have found that errors occur commonly in medical practice. Errors in medical care can be dangerous and may result in permanent damage or death. One study reported that the number of patients who die daily in the United States as a result of medical errors is equivalent to the number who would die if a jumbo jet crashed every day. We are all aware of every crash of a jumbo jet, but few people are aware of the incidence of medical errors. That is because, unlike plane crash deaths, which occur all at once in a horrific drama, bad outcomes from medical errors happen one at a time, often days or weeks after the error occurs, and in the relative privacy of homes and hospitals across the country. This chapter explains how and why errors happen and offers practical advice to help protect you from becoming the victim of a medical error.

The Nature of Medicine

The Uncertainty of Medicine

Humans are biologically complex, and each of us is unique. Although high school biology classes and even medical textbooks present human anatomy and physiology as identical, in fact, no two humans are exactly alike, not even identical twins. We vary in our susceptibility and reactions to disease, as well as in our responses to the environment and to treatment.

Type
Chapter
Information
Surviving Health Care
A Manual for Patients and Their Families
, pp. 56 - 68
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2010

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Send book to Kindle

To send this book to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Send book to Dropbox

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Send book to Google Drive

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×