Estimando las muertes relacionadas a error médico: desde la perspectiva de los defensores del paciente

Estimating Hospital-Related Deaths Due to Medical Error: A Perspective From Patient Advocates

A debate has emerged for the last several decades about the safety of the United States’ healthcare system and the number of patients who die each year in hospitals because of medical errors. The most recent estimate was by Makary and Daniel1 and published in The British Medical Journal, and the estimated number is more 200,000 patients annually.

Why is estimating error-related mortality so important? It obviously represents the most severe outcome that can be caused by a wide variety of preventable complications including the following: bed ulcers, infections, embolism, surgical error, misdiagnosis, etc. Unlike other adverse outcomes, mortality can be unequivocally defined. Granted, the overall metric that determines risk and preventability adds layers of complexity, at least everyone agrees with the definition of the event. Many argue over when an infection occurs or when a fall should be a reportable event but death is a definitive and nondebatable outcome. Prevention mandates that institutions invest in patient safety and foster a culture of safety among staff and administration.

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