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What are the most common medical errors that could harm you?

Much discussion has been spread regarding medical mistakes and how they impact residents in Pennsylvania and other states across the nation. While it has been noted that fatal medical mistakes rank high when it comes to giving a number to the leading causes of death in the United States, it is more important to note how likely medical mistakes are and what are the likely types to impact patients in the U.S.

What are the most common medical errors that could harm you? While many patients fear that something could get left inside of them during a surgery, the wrong body part is operated on there is a patient mix-up, these are not the likely errors to impact the average patient. While these severe medical errors do unfortunately occur and frequently make headlines, this post will focus on the five medical errors that are the most common.

The first is a fall occurring in a hospital or medical facility. Roughly a million hospitalized Americans fall each year, and of these, a third are deemed preventable. The second most common medical error is the misuse of antibiotics. Research indicates that around 50 percent of the time, antibiotics are actually unnecessarily or incorrectly prescribed.

Drug errors, which is a more well known medical errors, is ranked third. It was discovered that roughly 1,000 preventable medication errors occur in hospital each day. This usually occurs when a patient is prescribed an incorrect dose. Coming in fourth is too much bed rest. Because it is important to start moving as soon as a patient is able to, if a patient is prescribed too much bed rest, this could weaken his or her body, making them even more prone to falls.

Lastly, the fifth most common medical error is discharging a patient before he or she is ready. Although hospitals provide clear discharge instructions, if a patient is not ready or prepared to care of his or her ailment at home, this could increase his or her chances of readmission for the same or new medical problems.

If you believe that you have suffered a medical error because of a negligent medical facility or a negligent doctor, it is important to understand your rights as a patient. A medical malpractice claim is a possible action. This could help the injured patient recover compensation for medical bills, losses and damages.

Source: Webmd.com, "How Concerned Should You Be About Medical Errors?" Jan. 12, 2017

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