We are at our most vulnerable when at the hands of a doctor, making trust one of the most important emotions a patient can have towards medical professionals. It is equally important, however, to ensure you are aware of the possibilities of human error, especially towards preventable issues. A recent article from the National Post (September 20, 2015) reports on a 2004 study, which indicates that 7.25 per cent of patients, or 1 in 13 people, suffer unintended harm at Canadian hospitals. At the top of the list of errors are things like; forgetting foreign objects in a patient during surgery, doctors operating on the wrong body part or patient, wrongly administered toxic gas, unsterilized medical equipment, transplanting the incorrect biological material – including the wrong blood type and incompatible organs, giving patients drugs they have a known allergy to, accidental burns, failure to prevent suicide attempts, and infant abductions or baby swaps.
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