According to the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, an estimated 40 000 patients every day across the US are experiencing medical harm. In many cases, this medical harm comes from medical mistakes and preventable errors. According to one North Carolina study, there are 25.1 patient injuries in the US per 100 hospital admissions. According to a Health Grades study, nearly 200 000 Americans die each year due to preventable medical errors. This figure does not include drug interactions and side effects, which account for another 100 000 deaths annually, according to the organization.
Miami medical mistakes are common, simply due to the large number of people in the city. However, medical mistakes and misdiagnoses are also common throughout Miami-Dade county, Broward county, and across Southern Florida. There are many reasons for this:
1) Inadequate hand washing and hygiene. Hospitals and all health care settings are a perfect breeding ground for bacteria and infections. In fact, many superbugs and other serious infections develop or spread in hospital settings. While all medical professionals are taught about the importance of hand washing and hygiene, the actual practice of standards varies widely.
2) Incorrect medication or dosages. Medication in the wrong doses can lead to permanent injury or fatalities. Prescribing the wrong medication or pharmaceutical errors are also a leading cause of adverse effects in clinics and at hospitals.
3) Catheters. Catheters increase the risk of bladder and kidney infection. They should be used only if needed and should be removed as soon as they are no longer needed.
4) Lack of patient observation or monitoring. Miami slip and fall accidents occur to patients regularly, and can be especially dangerous for elderly patients. As well, bed sores and other symptoms of inadequate care are often reported by frustrated patients. If patients need to be in bed in the hospital for an extended period of time, they should be placed on an air flow mattress and their position should be shifted regularly. Bed sores can become large wounds and can even become infected, so it is important to ensure that they do not form.
5) Infections. Infections can easily occur after many medical procedures and surgeries. Proper monitoring, correct use of antibiotics, and frequent replacement of dressings can help reduce the risk.
6) Blood clots. Blood clots are a potentially serious complication which can occur after surgery or after a prolonged time of bed rest. Blood clots can be prevented by walking (where possible), pneumatic boots, and blood thinners. If a blood clot does develop, it can be fatal if it travels to the heart, brain, or lungs.
7) Cost considerations. In cases where doctors are overworked and facilities are understaffed, there is less time and fewer resources available for each patient. This can easily lead to mistakes as medical professionals rush to complete tasks that require a larger team of professionals.
There are many things you can do to help prevent Miami misdiagnosis and medical errors. Bring a trusted friend to medical appointments, for example, to act as an advocate. Ask plenty of questions and take an active role in your treatment. Write down instructions, the medications you have been given, and other details shared with you by medical staff.
If you do find that you have sustained injuries due to medical error, contact the Flaxman Law Group to discuss your case. You may face high medical costs or lost income as a result of your injuries, and Florida law does provide redress for these injuries. The Flaxman Law Group has offices in Miami, Homestead, and Hollywood, as well as a track record of thousands of successfully completed personal injury cases. Call the Flaxman Law Group today to arrange for a free consultation to get the facts about your case.