Mistakes Still Happening During Surgeries

By: KKTV News Email
By: KKTV News Email

A new study says despite rules in place to prevent surgical mistakes, operations have still been performed on the wrong body part, or even the wrong patient.

The study looked at errors reported by doctors to the Colorado Physician Insurance Company between 2002 and 2008.

Of the more than 27,000 incidents reported, the study found 25 surgeries were actually performed on the wrong patient, and 107 operations were on the wrong body part.

The Chief Medical Officer at Penrose Hospital here in the Springs says they have several procedures in place to keep mistakes like that from happening.

For example, he says, they require patients to show two forms of identification before any procedure.

Surgeons are also required to put their initials where the incision will be. And once in surgery, the operating procedure is read out loud and they make sure the correct patient in is the room.
Jeff Oram-Smith of Penrose says "We are paying much more attention to it now than previously and it is because of national, actually world wide statistics of some of the errors that have occurred, our entire industry has become more safety conscious."

He says that all hospitals are now required to report any incident that happens, so while statistics may look like surgical mistakes are increasing, it may just be because they are now reported regularly.

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