Preventable Medical Errors at US Hospitals Cause Alarming Number of Deaths

May 13, 2016 | By admin

A new study has revealed that preventable medical errors are the third-leading cause of death in the US.

The study was recently published in BMJ, an extremely influential medical journal. Researchers behind the study analyzed hospital data from 2013 and learned that more than 250,000 people died as a result of preventable mistakes at U.S. hospitals. This figure tops the total number of deaths from strokes and Alzheimer’s disease combined. In fact, the only causes of death greater than preventable medical errors are cancer and heart disease.

These outcomes are particularly tragic when considering that most of the medical malpractice victims had come to hospitals in order to be treated for illnesses and injuries. They put their faith and their trust in the doctors treating them – and died as a result. Although we expect that sometimes doctors may not always be able to save us from a catastrophic injury or illness, we certainly don’t expect the doctors or nurses treating us to act negligently.

Another factor that makes the preventable hospital error figures even more staggering is the fact that deaths caused by nursing home negligence and out-patient care mistakes were not included in the research data.

The lead author of the study, Martin Makary, is a professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland. Makary reflected on the study results and observed that major causes of death in this country include “communication breakdowns, fragmented healthcare, diagnostic mistakes, and overdosing.” All of these mistakes, which fall under the category of “preventable medical errors,” represent “one of the most underreported endemics in global health.”

To learn more, read the article, “Medical Error Third Leading Cause of Death in US: Study.”


If you or a loved one has been the victim medical negligence, whether it was a hospital error, a medication error or misdiagnosis, you need a qualified medical malpractice attorney on your side. The experienced, compassionate medical malpractice lawyers at Lombardi and Lombardi, P.A. can help you get the compensation you need. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.


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