Medical diagnostic errors kill 40-80,000 each year

According to a study published in the March 11 2009 issue of the JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION, misdiagnosis accounts for an estimated 40,000 to 80,000 hospital deaths per year and tort claims for diagnostic errors- defined as diagnosis that are missed, wrong, or delayed–are nearly twice as common as claims for medication errors. 

In the study, David Newman Toker, MD, PHD, and Peter Provost, MD, PHD, attempted to throw the blame for most of these errors on “system errors” rather than on individual medical doctors who lack the training or skill to make correct diagnosis. 

“Moving away from a model that chastisies individual physicians to one that focuses on improving the medical system as a whole could offer big payoffs for improving diagnostic accuracy as well as cost effectiveness of care,” said Newman-Toker assistant professor of Neurology at the Johns Hopkins University school of Medicine and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg school of Public Health. 

Because diagnositc errors can be tricky to track to their roots, Provnovost, an expert on breaking down complex medical problems, says more research is needed to understand and find patterns in the origins of  such errors. 

In the meantime, however, the death toll from diagnostic errors will be added to the already stagering number of injuries and deaths caused by medications errors, estimated at 1.5 million.  SOURCE:   “DIAGNOSTIC ERRORS –THE NEXT FRONTIER FOR PATIENT SAFETY” BY DAVID NEWMAN-TOKER, PETER PROVNOVOST. JAMA MARCH 11TH 2009(10):1060

I put this article on my blog because we as a whole should look at what we can do so we never get in to a predicament where our health is so bad we have to play Russian Roulette with it.  I’m not willing to let my mind-body go and then leave it up to someone else to take care of it.  Your health is your responsibility and the choices you make today either move you towards or away from health. 

If Chiropractic had these stats we wouldn’t be in business.  I think we have become numb to these staggering stats. 

I know you can live better, I know you have it in you to start eating, moving, and thinking better.  Chiropractic is an essential and necessary form of care for you to fuction at your highest level.  Don’t procrastinate in keeping your spine and  nervous system healthy for a lifetime.

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