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Surgeon exposes common hospital mistakes

It may be easy to dismiss concerns over the dangers found within hospital walls. But these concerns may be more worrisome when they are raised by a medical professional. This is exactly what Dr. Marty Makary has done by speaking out about the hidden dangers in many hospitals. The sad reality is that these issues arise often and can be found in any hospital, including those in Miami.

Makary cites a study published by the New England Journal of Medicine that states one in four hospital patients is harmed by a medical mistake of some sort. Additionally, according to Makary, surgeons operate on the wrong body part or the wrong patient up to 40 times a week. Makary also conducted a survey that found 40 percent of hospital employees stated they would not go to the hospital at which they work for medical treatment.

Makary's account highlights the various forms of hospital negligence. Medication error, surgical error and failure to fully inform patients of their options all constitute medical malpractice. When this occurs, patients are at a greater risk of injury or death. When physical and emotional pain is overwhelming, it would be unfair to force these victims and their families to pay for the harm done to them. Luckily, these individuals do have options.

A medical malpractice lawsuit may allow victims of hospital negligence to obtain compensation. These awards can be applied towards medical expenses, pain and suffering and lost wages. Victims need only show that medical professionals breached a reasonable duty of care and that compensable injuries resulted from that breach. These awards can help victims return to a normal life.

While more regulations may slow hospital negligence, legal action taken by patients may have a stronger impact. Holding irresponsible doctors and hospitals accountable and making them pay for the harm they cause will deter other doctors from being negligent in the future.

Source: CBS News, "Surgeon sounds off on dangers of hospital care," Sept. 17, 2012

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