Recently, California Senator Barbara Boxer released a report urging doctors, nurses and other health care professionals to reduce the number of medical errors. She cites a frightening statistic – that an average of 325,000 people die in American hospital each year from medical errors, making it the third leading cause of death nationwide.
The report – "Medical Errors" – points to nine leading causes of death from medical mistakes including adverse drug effects and catheter-associated urinary tract infections to blood clots and ventilator-associated pneumonia.
If you believe that you or a loved one has suffered harm as the result of a medical error, it is important to consult immediately with an experienced Los Angeles medical malpractice attorney.
In a statement, Sen. Boxer explains, "This is not the time to sit back and do nothing when we have hundreds of thousands of deaths each year… We have the opportunity to save hundreds of thousands of lives each year."
Boxer delivered her statement during a press conference at UCLA medical center, where she observed new technologies in place to help reduce the incidence of errors, including the use of technology to help reduce drug errors, the use of robots to help disinfect in order to prevent hospital acquired infections.
Hopefully such technology will improve patient safety as the personal and societal costs of medical errors continue to grow.
The Patient Safety Movement Foundation, which is supported by Boxer, is working toward eliminating preventable deaths by 2020. Examples of preventable errors documented thus far this year include surgeons leaving a sponge in a patient's abdomen during a surgical procedure, and a patient who died as the result of excess blood loss during a right knee replacement surgery.
"These deaths are all the more heartbreaking for families because they are preventable," Boxer said.
For more information, or if you or a loved one has been harmed by a preventable medical error, we urge you to contact our experienced Los Angeles medical malpractice lawyers immediately for a confidential consultation.