When an appointment with a doctor does not go as expected, patients often want to know the reason why. Even in the cases of surgeries that cost time in recovery or even a life, families often put an explanation at the top priority for healing. Some hospitals are trying to address that need.
If you've ever had to have surgery, you know that it's a little scary. You have to be unconscious, in many cases, and you may not know what to expect when you wake up. During the surgery, you expect your medical provider to pay attention only to you, but did you know that isn't always the case?
Nearly everyone relies on a doctor to ease pain, cure diseases or even save a life. Clinical professionals are highly trained and often working with a broad range of experience, but they can make mistakes. If one results in a painful or debilitating problem, the mistake may warrant compensation.
If you're a patient who has undergone surgery and found out that a sponge was left inside your body, you're one of many who has suffered from a "never event." A "never event," aptly named due to being an event that never should have happened or shouldn't take place because there are supposed to be safeguards in place to prevent it. Leaving a sponge in a patient is one of those errors that shouldn't happen.
In most cases, people believe that a less-invasive surgery is a safer surgery. It reduces the likelihood of infections, and it's typically less damaging to the body. However, in studies of minimally invasive surgeries compared to open surgeries for radical hysterectomies, it was shown that the minimally invasive surgery was actually more dangerous.
Surgeries that involve the wrong patient, procedure or site are referred commonly known as "never events" because they're ones that shouldn't ever occur if the right pre-operative protocol is followed. While data shows that this type of surgical error only happens once in every 112,000 procedures in a hospital setting, those that occur in outpatient settings may be remarkably higher.
Most doctors value technology and respect it as it improves their tools for saving lives. However, despite this attitude and physicians being among the most tech-literate professionals in Illinois and the United States, many of them dislike their experience with computers in the workplace.
We have become increasingly dependent on personal electronic devices, and surgeons are no exception. Smartphones typically top the list of "must-have" devices. They often take the user's attention away from what they are supposed to be doing. While surgeons are known for their professional commitment, they are just as vulnerable to distraction as anyone else is.
We rely on doctors more and more as we age and encounter surprises along the road of life. Medical professionals are an irreplaceable part of a healthy lifestyle, so it is often seen as a betrayal when doctors and other clinicians make mistakes that cost years of recovery time or worse.
If doctors are to heal us, they must have our trust. Many patients prefer doctors who have been with them for years because they have put in the time and effort to earn this trust, perhaps by comforting them in some of life's most trying moments.