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Adverse Events in Hospitals Largely Undetected



Adverse events serious enough to harm patients are occurring in U.S. hospitals at least 10 times more often than previously measured, according to a study conducted at three large U.S. hospitals.



2 comments on "Adverse Events in Hospitals Largely Undetected"
Todd Madden (4/22/2011 at 5:04 PM)

I think the study speaks volumes of the poor care provided on average at US hospitals. I would never have surgery at a US petri dish, err hospital. There is much better care and technology used at non US facilities like Severance and Bumrungrad where CPOE is regularly used and they can actual manage look alike and sound alike drugs. Todd
Cary Gutbezahl, MD (4/7/2011 at 2:50 PM)

This fascinating study is worthy of reporting but the overinterpretation of its findings are inappropriate. Like most studies, this study has limitations, which limit the interpretation of its findings. The study was undertaken at three large hospitals. Under what logic are three large hospitals representative of the entire health system? Are the finding at large hospitals the same as small hospitals? Large hospitals often have different care models and are referral facilities. Also, how can three hospitals be considered representative of all large hospitals. Three is a pretty small sample size relative to the universe of comparable hospitals. There is no doubt that the findings are worthy of concern, but they should not be misinterpreted as universal without corroborating evidence. Scientific principles need to be followed, not just in the design of studies but in their interpretation.