Each year, thousands of Indiana residents rely on the education, experience, and commitment of professional health care providers to diagnose symptoms, create a treatment plan and execute quality care. However, medical errors can occur, leaving anyone at risk of becoming the victim of their doctor's oversight. Malpractice, while seemingly not a big deal at first, is actually an incredibly dangerous problem. Doctor errors can potentially cause significant harm to patients and in serious cases, certain mistakes can be fatal.
According to Consumer Reports, people who are concerned about receiving high-quality care that is void of costly errors can take matters into their own hands by taking a couple of proactive and preventative steps. These include the following:
- They should be prepared for their appointment. Preparation requires people to make a comprehensive list of symptoms, bring any medications they are currently taking and be prepared to discuss their medical history.
- They should follow up when anticipating information like test results. Often, not hearing anything usually means a person's tests came back clear. However, people may be able to prevent mistakes, and they may feel much more peace of mind when they call about their test results to confirm that everything is good.
- They should bring a trusted family member or friend with them to critical appointments. Additionally, people can benefit from taking detailed notes about what happened and what was said at their appointment should they need to reference it in the future.
According to U.S. News, medical errors account for nearly 250,000 deaths in the United States each year making them the third leading cause of death in the nation.