"Life Saving Medicines" Drive Death & Sickness Rates in the USA
How many die from medical mistakes in U.S. hospitals?
Now comes a study in the current issue of the Journal of Patient Safety that says the numbers may be much higher — between 210,000 and 440,000 patients each year who go to the hospital for care suffer some type of preventable harm that contributes to their death, the study says.
That would make medical errors the third-leading cause of death in America, behind heart disease, which is the first, and cancer, which is second.
The new estimates were developed by John T. James, a toxicologist at NASA’s space center in Houston who runs an advocacy organization called Patient Safety America. James has also written a book about the death of his 19-year-old son after what James maintains was negligent hospital care.
Drug Overdose Sending More Americans to the ED
Drug overdoses send more than 1 million Americans to the emergency department (ED) each year, and the number is rising, according to a new data brief from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).
A substantial portion of drug-poisoning visits involve analgesics, antipyretics, and antirheumatics, as well as sedatives, hypnotics, tranquilizers, and other psychotropic agents.
"Poisoning is the leading cause of injury-related mortality in the United States, with more than 40,000 deaths annually. Drugs account for 90% of poisoning deaths, and the number of deaths from drug poisoning has increased substantially in recent years," Michael Albert, MD, MPH, and colleagues from the NCHS note in their article.
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