According to a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services report issued on January 6, over 80% of errors committed by physicians in hospitals go unreported and undocumented. This should shock and alarm health administrators, legislators and the public in general. There is no excuse for not reporting these errors, no matter how trivial they may seem at the time. If the errors are not addressed, corrective measures cannot be taken to prevent medical malpractice in the future, and potentially save lives.
“By identifying what’s happening to patients, that’ll prove a learning process,” said Deputy Inspector for the DHHS Ruth Ann Dorrill. Physicians need to be held accountable in order to protect the public.
Currently, there is no set number for punitive damages in Florida medical malpractice cases.
Potential tort reform may put a cap on the punitive damages that can be awarded in medical malpractice cases in Florida. There needs to be a financial incentive for physicians and hospitals to provide the best care possible. If there is no financial incentive to keep hospitals and their physicians on their toes, health care will become more and more reckless.
Have you or a loved one ever experienced or witnessed a medical error that went unreported?
Wooten Kimbrough, P.A.—Orlando personal injury attorneys.