Outcomes and Errors

robert bell rmsbell200 at YAHOO.COM
Mon Apr 17 05:37:33 UTC 2017

We lack extensive good data on all errors in medicine, including diagnostic.

Outcomes seem to be reported on occasions and the current issue of the May 2017 Consumer Reports (CR) has listings of Outcomes for cardiac surgery. 

CR  says that more than 1000 hospitals perform heart surgery. Half share their complication and mortality rates. There are tables which give regional ratings for hospitals submitting (South, Midwest, and West), and outcomes (survival, complications, developing a deep chest infection,suffering a stroke, kidney infection, etc. ranked as worse than expected, as expected, better than expected for both bypass surgery and aortic valve replacement. None were listed  as worse than expected.

This made me think and ask is there a correlation between outcomes and errors in medicine including diagnostic errors?

If there were more outcomes in various areas at a particular hospital could this correlate roughly with the errors in the hospital. With the possible message that if the outcomes are better in one or more areas of the hospital the total error rates will be lower due to higher general standards?

Is there any data from anywhere in the world that shows a correlation between outcomes and errors?

Rob Bell, M.D.

Moderator: David Meyers, Board Member, Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine

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