Understanding Medical Errors

Posted on May 26, 2010

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An Institute of Medicine report states that as many as many as 44,000 to 98,000 people die each year as result of medical errors. Here are some tips from the American Academy of Family Physicians about how to prevent medical errors.  

  1. Play an active role in your health care. Do your research, and be a part of all decision making.
  2. Tell your doctors all medications you take, including supplements and vitamins.
  3. Make sure that your doctor knows all of your allergies.
  4. Make sure you understand all of the details about your medications.
  5. If you are in a hospital, you might want to ask the health care professionals if they washed their hands before treating you.
  6. When you are being discharged from a hospital, make sure you understand the discharge instructions.
  7. Ask about test results if you do not hear from your doctor.
  8. Learn about your condition and treatments from reliable sources.
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