Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Prevention and Management of Medical Errors

Is it truly the 3rd leading cause of death in America?

According to the CDC, in 2015, 633,842 people died of heart disease, 595,930 died of cancer, and 155,041 died of chronic respiratory disease—the top three causes of death in the U.S.  However, according to Dr. Martin Makary, MD, M.P.H a professor at John Hopkins and a recent study he conducted may prove the CDC wrong putting medical errors as the cause of death behind cancer but ahead of respiratory disease.
Dr. Martin goes on to state that;   “Incidence rates for deaths directly attributable to medical care gone awry haven’t been recognized in any standardized method for collecting national statistics,” says Martin Makary, M.D., M.P.H., professor of surgery at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and an authority on health reform. “The medical coding system was designed to maximize billing for physician services, not to collect national health statistics, as it is currently being used.”


Dr. Martin is not suggesting that these medical errors are due to "bad doctors" or nurses but maybe systematic errors or errors in the method of data collection. 


 "Medical error has been defined as an unintended act (either of omission or commission) or one that does not achieve its intended outcome,3 the failure of a planned action to be completed as intended (an error of execution), the use of a wrong plan to achieve an aim (an error of planning),4 or a deviation from the process of care that may or may not cause harm to the patient.5 Patient harm from medical error can occur at the individual or system level"




Pamela Clark as Certified Registered Nurse Infusionist (CRNI) with over 28 years experience has created an online CE course to help nurses understand the risks of giving medications and what steps to take to prevent medication errors from a nursing standpoint.



Upon completion of her online course the nurse will learn:

  • Define medical error, adverse event, “never event” and sentinel event.
  • Discuss the scope of medical errors in the United States in terms of monetary cost and lives affected.
  • Explain at least two system analysis models.
  • Discuss national/state mandatory error reporting requirements.
  • List at least 5 types of medical errors and their causes.
  • Describe SBAR.
  • Recognize appropriate and inappropriate documentation.


Pamela Clarks experience spans multiple infusion settings including: acute care, long-term care, home infusion, and ambulatory infusion care. She also has experience in oncology and oncology research.


To learn more about "Prevention and Management of Medical Errors" click on any of the links and it will take you directly to her course.  Pamela's course will not only provide you with excellent nursing information but continuing education hours as well.