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Tuesday 24th April 2018

One in 10 harmed in hospital

29th November 2007

Researchers have claimed that accidents, errors and mishaps affect as many as one in 10 inpatients in hospitals.

nurse cuts

The team from the University of York published its findings in the journal Quality and Safety in Health Care, saying up to half the incidents were preventable and more should be spent on monitoring “adverse incidents.?

The study, which focussed on 1,006 cases in a single major acute hospital in England, found examples of fatal surgical errors, infections, drug complications and bed sores.

Some 87 people had definitely suffered at least one “adverse event?, though the researchers said that it was likely that even more had suffered harm. Between 30% and 55% of these could have been prevented by clinical staff or managers, they said.

Research leader Professor Trevor Sheldon noted that other countries have similar or worse rates of mishaps than the NHS.

But he said: “The question we have to ask is whether the NHS is currently doing enough to help people find the time to reflect on these cases and learn lessons from them.?

The government has encouraged trusts to spend more effort looking at the issue in recent years but other studies suggest the reporting rate is still poor.

The Department of Health said the National Patient Safety Agency - established in 2001 - was designed specifically to improve the NHS response to adverse incidents.

A spokesman added: “As the study suggests, many adverse events could be avoided if lessons were properly learned and fed back into practice.?


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