Stuck in a rut of negative despair?

Lyn Behnke lynbehnke at GMAIL.COM
Wed May 30 18:35:23 UTC 2018

For 20+ years I have been AFRAID of making an error for the reasons you outlined, but it also means that I have performed a disservice to my patients and that breaks my heart.  The term error is so value laden that I agree that we work toward something else that doesn’t “gloss over” error but also humanizes medicine and improves the process.  I don’t like opportunities necessarily as this doesn’t give enough gravity to the situation.  I just did a scroll through a thesaurus that really didn’t help.  But in the airline industry, they use “Interruption” frequently.  If used correctly, it could conceivably help guide a study.  For example, was the outcome an “interruption of process”, and “interruption of the education process”, and “interruption of the planned procedure”.  Something that indicates there is a deviation from the planned process that doesn’t have a value label.


From: ROBERT M BELL <0000000296e45ec4-dmarc-request at LIST.IMPROVEDIAGNOSIS.ORG>
Reply-To: Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine <IMPROVEDX at LIST.IMPROVEDIAGNOSIS.ORG>, ROBERT M BELL <rmsbell200 at YAHOO.COM>
Date: Wednesday, May 30, 2018 at 11:47 AM
Subject: [IMPROVEDX] Stuck in a rut of negative despair?


Dear all, 


As many of you know I have been worried that, for more than 20 years, we seem to be making little progress in reducing errors in medicine, as a whole.


My recent thinking is that Error is such a negative word that everyone, for many reasons runs away from it! An error often causes such anger/hurt, financial loss, and lack of of prestige that it is not/never easily talked about. Consequently, errors are one way or another camouflaged or completely hidden from view. 


And presumably this is all tied in many ways to litigation risk and/or financial loss. 


This means that little happens to solve the basic problems. One could ask are we ever going to solve the problem if these barriers continue to exist?


So how do we make a break through? How to further help our patients?


Could we brainstorm several good ideas, or even a combination of these, to come up with a program/study that could be presented to one, two, or three State Legislatures that in exchange for altering/modifying the current litigation regulations WE provide reductions in errors in medicine with improved medical care.


Presumably one would need a well designed study to be undertaken and completed.


Also, hospitalization is not all bad, and if there were published accurate figures of success would the bad/error things tend to be drowned out, eventually letting one better concentrate on reducing all errors/adverse events? All this can occur by keeping better more accurate figures, doing more RCAs, understanding errors, and having a culture of excellence in all areas - and that more often comes from the top. 


And I know that this occurs in many places but needs to be spread around, etc.


And I am sure/suspect there will be many other ways to move forward.


One could ask are we are stuck in a rut of unrelenting negativity?


Do we need defined time-related goals? Do we need to collaborate with other organizations for solutions? Do we need courteous and polite activism? 


Do we need to be more BOLD? 


Would welcome thoughts and ideas.


Rob Bell M.D.



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