Baltimore Malpractice Attorneys: Medical “Never Events” Still HappenDecember 27, 2012
Over a decade ago, organizations tracking medical errors in hospitals and healthcare facilities coined the term never events to refer to dangerous, often deadly mistakes that should never occur since they are preventable. Despite better training and stricter reporting, these medical errors still occur. As a result, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services stopped paying for costs related to never events in 2009 as a way to pressure medical facilities to clean up their act.
The current list of never events includes unambiguous, serious and usually preventable medical outcomes within six categories:
- Surgical errors, including wrong site or wrong patient surgeries and leaving foreign objects in the patient
- Product or device error, including contaminated drugs and intravascular air embolism
- Patient protection, including releasing infants to the wrong families and in-hospital suicide prevention
- Care management, including medication errors, incompatible blood transfusions, maternal death in low-risk pregnancies and pressure sores
- Environmental events, including electric shock, burns or falls
- Criminal events, including sexual or physical assault
Not every medical procedure has a successful outcome, but never events should not occur — ever. Injuries that occur when healthcare professionals fail to follow standard medical practices can have devastating consequences. At LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton, P.A., we use our legal expertise and resources to help our medical malpractice clients secure full and fair compensation when they are victims of never events. Holding the medical profession accountable for preventable errors is another way to stop such events from occurring in Maryland. Contact our Baltimore malpractice attorneys for legal advice and information on how you can get the compensation you deserve.