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slides: Preventable Hospital Deaths by the Numbers

Monday, March 17, 2014


Only cancer and heart disease kills more Americans than medical mistakes. Experts say almost half of all local emergency room visits are unnecessary, which is just one factor in rise of preventable hospital deaths in America each year.

Read the full article here

While the data for state and specific hospital preventable data is not reported, GoLocal discovered some alarming facts regarding preventable deaths related to hospital care.

See the statistics in the slides below


Related Slideshow: Preventable Deaths in American Hospitals

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To Err is Human

In 1999 the Institute of Medicine published the bombshell “To Err Is Human” report, which revealed that up to 98,000 people a year die because of mistakes in hospitals. Though initially disputed, the report is now widely accepted by doctors and hospital officials, including RI Dept. of Health Director Dr. Michael Fine.

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Health and Human Services

In 2010, the Office of Inspector General for Health and Human Services said that bad hospital care contributed to the deaths of 180,000 patients in Medicare alone in a given year.

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Journal of Patient Safety

In 2013, the Journal of Patient Safety published research that claims the number of preventable deaths may be much higher — between 210,000 and 440,000 patients each year who go to the hospital for care suffer some type of preventable harm that contributes to their death. That's roughly one-sixth of all deaths in the United States each year. 

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John. T. James, Ph.D

Based on that 2013 Journal of Patient Safety report by John T. James, Ph.D, medical errors are the third-leading cause of death in America, behind heart disease, which is the first, and cancer, which is second. 

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Over Treatment

Many preventable deaths are the result of "over treatment," according to Dr. Michael Fine, Director of the Rhode Island Department of Health, who said 30 to 50 percent of all medical procedures are unnecessary.

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Unnecessary Admissions

According to Dr. Michael Fine, Director of the Rhode Island Department of Health, at least 11 percent of ALL hospital admissions are unnecessary.

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Healthcare Improvement

The Institute for Healthcare Improvement estimates there are 15 million incidents of medical harm each year.

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Checklist Protocol

Dr. Peter Pronovost, Johns Hopkins Medicine’s senior vice president for patient safety and quality, has developed a scientifically proven method for reducing the deadly infections associated with central line catheters. His simple but effective checklist protocol virtually eliminated these infections across the state of Michigan, saving 1,500 lives and $100 million annually.


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