New health research shows that almost half of hospital surgeries use the wrong medication. This new startling discovery shows that the health system has rampant medication errors and also a lot of side effects from drugs which can cause problems for the patient.
This rate which was researched at the anesthesiology department at the Massachusetts General Hospital made observations over 277 procedures that took place there. The numbers are amazingly high compared to data from earlier studies which were done on the same subject. It appears that most of the older studies were done with data coming straight from clinicians, instead of keeping an eye out on operations.
Researchers stated that the country is facing a lot of potential harm to patients due to medication. Apparently around a third of the errors which were observed in the study actually led to harm for the patient.
This issue was brought into attention since 1999. At that time the Institute of Medicine found that errors such as these were the main cause of death in hospitals all over the country. Errors during surgery kill around 44,000 Americans a year. This number is a lot higher than the deaths attributed to car crashes or breast cancer.
Ever since then hospitals have been trying their hardest to improve safety during surgeries with the use of simple checklists to avoid mistakes which could arise. They have also introduced an electronic system which gives medicine to patients in order to identify potential medication errors which could arise.
It seems that mistakes which are made somewhere between medication and surgery have not been studied in an effective way up until now. Drugs which are given to a patient during surgery are not as closely watched as prescriptions.
Prescriptions will generally be checked by the pharmacist and the nurses before they are given to the patient. Operation wards operate differently which makes them riskier. This is because during a surgery the state of the patient can change very quickly so the doctors can’t take all the precautions that they normally would.
This research might finally bring attention to mistakes of this type which would make citizens have more faith in the health system. No one wants to worry about the possibility of not waking up when going under surgery.
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