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Report finds human errors major factor in surgical mistakes

| Sep 1, 2019 | Surgical Errors

When a person in New York must have a surgery or one of their family members requires an operation, it is logical to have concerns and questions. Understanding the nature of the procedure, the pre-surgical instructions and what to expect after the operation can all be important in helping to allay any fears and prepare for the surgery. These things, however, may not be able to guard against all of the concerns a patient or their loved ones may have as many complications can arise from mistakes that happen during the operation itself.

Surgical errors are one of many types of medical errors that may result in serious injuries to patients or even to patient deaths. A report recently published in the JAMA Open Network reviews more than 5,000 surgical procedure cases to get a closer look at the causes of any errors found to have occurred. Becker’s Hospital Review indicates that human error was a factor in more than 56% of the identified adverse events.

In all, the study pinpointed 188 operations from which an adverse event resulted. These events included serious complications, up to and including death of patients. Of the 188 adverse events, 106 were influenced by some type of human mistake.

Errors involving surgical team members’ cognition, cognitive bias, reduced or insufficient attention and poor recognition were said to have had a high impact on the adverse events. Experts are pointing to this study’s results as cause to increase training for health care professionals in these particular areas as one way to improve patient safety.

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