While much ink has been spilled over medical malpractice insurance rates for New York doctors and hospitals – commonly referred to as the “medical malpractice crisis” – what the medical profession does not want the public to know is that the crisis lies in the number of medical mistakes.
Several recent studies, including those conducted by the Institute of Medicine, HealthGrades, the United States Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, and the Kaiser Family Foundation, reveal the following troubling statistics:
- 50,000 to 100,000 Americans die annually due to preventable medical errors. Stated differently, more people die each year because of medical malpractice than because of motor vehicle accidents, breast cancer or AIDS.
- Roughly 32,000 Americans die annually due to hospital negligence.
- Approximately 1,000,000 people are injured annually due to medical mistakes.
- Medication errors account for 7,000 deaths annually.
- 80% of doctors surveyed reported that they had observed a colleague make a medical mistake. Only 10% reported the mistake.
- 84% of doctors surveyed reported witnessing a colleague take a shortcut that could injure a patient.
- 50% of nurses surveyed reported that they had observed a colleague make an error. Only 10% reported the error.
- 50% of nurses surveyed reported working with a colleague who appears incompetent.
- 62% of nurses surveyed reported witnessing a colleague take a shortcut that could injure a patient.
- Medical mistakes cost America $17,000,000,000 to $29,000,000,000 each year (less than 1/3 of the annual costs relate to lawsuits).
At the heart of the “medical malpractice crisis” are insurance industry investment practices. According to Victor Schwartz, General Counsel, American Tort Reform Association: “Insurance was cheaper in the 1990s because insurance companies knew that they could take a doctor’s premium and invest it, and $50,000 would be worth $200,000 five years later when the claim came in … An insurance company today can’t do that.”
The trial lawyers at Bottar Leone, PLLC, have decades of experience investigating, prosecuting and trying to verdict all types of medical malpractice and hospital mistake cases, including those arising out of a failure to diagnose, birth injury, or surgical error. If you or a loved one have been injured, you and/or your family may be entitled to compensation for lifelong health care, special education, medical expenses, medical bills, loss of income, and pain and suffering.
To discuss your case or concerns with an experienced Central New York medical malpractice attorney, contact Bottar Leone, PLLC now at (315) 422-3466, (800) 336-LAWS, or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.