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Most surgical errors are attributable to human error

On Behalf of | Oct 31, 2019 | Personal Injury

Most North Carolinians put a lot of trust in their doctors. This trust isn’t unfounded. After all, medical professionals must acquire extensive education and training before they are able to administer care to patients. Yet, despite their qualifications, doctors and nurses often make mistakes that put innocent patients in harm’s way, sometimes leaving those patients with serious injuries.

Surgical errors are one way that these mistakes can occur. Such errors may be in the form of a wrong-site surgery, an entirely wrong operation, nicked organs and retained surgical instruments in the patient’s body.

While these incidences are never acceptable, one study found that more than have of them are attributable to human error, which makes the matter even more egregious.

Although you may think that lack of communication is a primary culprit in these errors, those types of mistakes are actually relatively low. Instead, poor attention during surgical procedures, cognitive bias and lack of recognition played a bigger role in surgical errors.

Some medical professionals think this study’s results show that attention paid to teamwork and communication skills building is paying now. Now, they contend, the focus should be shifted toward teaching medical professionals how to identify and rectify their own mental shortcomings.

This may be challenging process that takes time to implement, which means that in the meantime hospital patients will continue to be at risk of suffering serious and even life-threatening injuries at the hands of negligent medical professionals.

Those who have been harmed by a surgical error may be able to recover compensation for the extensive damages inflicted upon them, which may be physical, emotional, and financial in nature. Proving a medical malpractice claim can be challenging, though, and expert witnesses often have to be utilized. To secure the strongest legal arguments to support their positions, medical malpractice victims should consider discussing their cases with experienced and skilled attorneys in the field.


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