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4 preventable medical mistakes you should know about

When you visit a doctor or hospital, you expect to receive timely care that addresses your medical condition. However, a 2013 report in the Journal of Patient Safety states that there are 210,000 to 400,000 people killed in hospitals each year due to preventable safety failures.

What are these preventable safety failures? Here are some of the most common:

-- Misdiagnosis: Most rare, strange conditions aren't missed by physicians. It's the common problems like cancer, pneumonia and heart failure that are often misdiagnosed. According to medical and autopsy records, this happened in about 10 percent of people who died. In 2015, the Institute of Medicine reported that this was the number one cause of payouts for medical malpractice.

-- Medication errors: Another common preventable harm comes from an error in medication. It might be that the wrong medicine or wrong dose was prescribed or the medicine was given at the wrong time.

-- Dangerous physicians. While it's not something anyone wants to think about, there are dangerous doctors practicing medicine, although they are few and far between.

-- Lost information: Hospitals tend to lock down their data instead of tracking it. Those hospitals which have converted to electronic medical records have shown a marked improvement in patient safety.

These are just a few of the medical errors that can be made by hospitals, doctors and medical staff. If you have been injured because of a medical error or other type of medical malpractice, an experienced lawyer can help you determine your legal options. One option may be to file a civil lawsuit seeking compensation from the liable parties.

Source: TriCounty Sentry, "Twelve Medical Mistakes That Can Harm You," Rich Laliberte, Oct. 06, 2016

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