Just this weekend, four babies were reported dead at a hospital in Dehradun, India. While the specific details of these incidents of hospital negligence are not yet known, these tragedies bring up a bigger issue in our medical world: Why are so many people—babies and adults alike—dying at such a rapid rate? The answer can be found in what is causing hospital negligence.
The most recent study of patient safety reported there were between 210,000 to 440,000 preventable deaths each year due to medical negligence. That makes medical errors the third leading cause of death in our country. Why does this number keep increasing, and are we even truly safe from hospital negligence? While there are many contributing reasons, perhaps the most important one is that many hospitals are beginning to be run more as profit centers than as patient care centers. When hospitals put profits over patient safety, the results can be catastrophic. There a few things that we as the public can do to help prevent hospital and doctor errors, but at the end of the day, the onus is still on the healthcare providers to do their jobs appropriately.
One of the very important aspects of a medical negligence case is achieving a result that will impact how the hospitals protect patient safety. Are there certain guidelines that are outdated? Are the hospital’s policies and procedures effective and correct? Unfortunately in medical malpractice cases, simple mistakes can lead to egregious outcomes. Preventing these errors from occurring in the first place is key to lowering the death toll due to medical negligence. Financial security is important to take care of future medical costs for the injured person, but implementing change at hospitals is essential to ensuring that these acts of negligence never happen again.