Dr. Danielle Ofri Discusses Flaws in the Medical System That May Contribute to Medical Errors

In June 2020, Dr. Danielle Ofri, clinical professor of medicine at the New York University Medical School, discussed medical errors and flaws in the health care system that perpetuate them. In her book, When We Do Harm: A Doctor Confronts Medical Error, Ofri provides a thoughtful and honest analysis of patient safety and the medical industry that explains how medical errors are more common than we may think. This topic is relevant now more than ever, as Ofri says medical mistakes have a higher probability of increasing as hospitals become overwhelmed. 

Medical Errors Happen, and Many Go Unreported

As we know all too well, doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals make mistakes. However, many mistakes that do not lead to patient harm, or “near-misses,” as Ofri describes them, are often unreported. This means that the number of reported medical mistakes may be vastly misrepresentative of the real scope of medical mistakes made by even the most careful and well-meaning medical professionals. 

“I don’t think we’ll ever know what number, in terms of cause of death, is [due to] medical error — but it’s not small,” said Ofri regarding the total number of medical mistakes that have occurred, reported or not. Ofri also notes that health care system flaws contribute to the amount of medical mistakes made by medical providers, as she discusses in her latest book. She claims that medical personnel who make “near-misses,” or medical mistakes that are swiftly caught or do not lead to negative reactions to the patient, are often not reported out of guilt or shame. If these medical errors were reported, however, it may be crucial to fixing the flaws in the medical system that perpetuate these mistakes.

The Attorneys at Peter Angelos P.C. Represent Victims of Medical Malpractice and Negligence

Preventable medical mistakes can affect victims for the rest of their lives. If you or a loved one have been adversely impacted by negligent medical care, contact the Baltimore medical malpractice attorneys at Peter Angelos P.C. today.