Most Hospital Mistakes Never Reported

by John McKiggan

Medical malpractice lawyers know most potential victims of medical malpractice never file a claim. Recently a report by ABC News has confirmed that in the United States more than 80% of hospital errors are not reported by hospital employees.

Hospitals Don’t Learn From Mistakes?

The report analyzed data from hospitalized Medicare patients. Investigators determined even when mistakes were reported hospitals rarely changed their policies or practices to prevent repeated errors. Hospitals usually claimed that errors were not due to “systemic quality problems”.

When is a Mistake Not a Mistake?

According to the study 61% of unreported medical errors were not even considered to be a mistake by hospital staff. The remaining 25% involved errors that should have been reported but were not.

More Serious Errors Don’t Lead to Higher Reporting

Another disturbing finding was that even the most serious types of errors like hospital acquired infections and patient deaths were treated the same as relatively minor errors like allergic reactions. In other words, hospital staff were no more likely to report an error leading to the death of a patient than they were to an error leading to an allergy to penicillin.

Canadian Malpractice Victims Face Difficult Odds

Medical Malpractice lawyers in Canada know that up to 98% of potential medical malpractice victims never receive compensation.

According to statistics from the Canadian Medical Protective Association (the nonprofit organization that defends almost all doctors in Canada) during a recent five year period more than 4,000 lawsuits were filed against doctors in Canada but only 2% resulted in trial verdicts for the victim.

In 2009 the CMPA spent 76 million dollars on legal fees defending doctors in medical malpractice claims across the country.

In the same five year period over 3,000 medical malpractice claims were dismissed or abandoned because the victim or his or her family ran out of money, quit or died before the case came to trial.

Tip of the Iceberg

Medical malpractice claims tend to get attention in the media. Mostly because they are so unusual. But the number of lawsuits that are filed in the court are really just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the number of potential medical malpractice victims who may not even know they have a claim.

Statistics compiled by the Canadian Medical Association indicate that medical errors kill 24,000 Canadians every year and more than 87,000 patients every year are the victim of some form of adverse event during their medical care.

That’s more than 100,000 potential medical malpractice claims in Canada every year!

But according to the CMPA only 1000 lawsuits are filed against doctors in Canada each year.

Want to Know More?
If you or a loved one have suffered injuries that you think may be due to medical malpractice you can get more information by reading my book Health Scare: The Consumer’s Guide to Medical Malpractice Claims in Canada ( Why 98% of Canadian Medical Malpractice Victims Never Receive a Penny in Compensation).

The book is for sale on (all sale proceeds are donated to charity).

Or you can get a copy for free by contacting me through this blog or by calling toll free in Atlantic Canada 1-877-423-2050 . We will send you a copy, at no charge, anywhere in the Maritimes.

Read Health Scare: The Consumers Guide to Medical Malpractice Claims and learn the answers to these questions:
•What is a medical malpractice case?
•What do I need to prove to win my case?
•What is the Standard of Care and why is it important?
•Top 10 reasons medical malpractice victims never receive compensation.
•How do I find a qualified medical malpractice lawyer?

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