By Nancy Berlinger
Clinical blunders is a number one challenge of wellbeing and fitness care within the usa. every year, extra sufferers die due to scientific error than are killed by means of motorcar injuries, breast melanoma, or AIDS. whereas such a lot executive and regulatory efforts are directed towards lowering and fighting error, the activities that are meant to stick to the harm or demise of a sufferer are nonetheless hotly debated. in keeping with Nancy Berlinger, conversations on sufferer defense are lacking numerous vital parts: spiritual voices, traditions, and versions. In After damage, Berlinger attracts on assets in theology, ethics, faith, and tradition to create a pragmatic and finished method of addressing the wishes of sufferers, households, and clinicians plagued by scientific errors. She emphasizes the significance of acknowledging fallibility, telling the reality, confronting emotions of guilt and disgrace, and delivering simply reimbursement. After damage provides vital human dimensions to a subject matter that has profound results for sufferers and health and wellbeing care services.
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Additional resources for After Harm: Medical Error and the Ethics of Forgiveness
Chapter three Patients’ and Families’ Narratives Personal narratives about medical error that describe the experience of injured patients and their families may be published as essays in peer-reviewed health policy journals or in newsletters for patient-safety advocates. They may take the form of memorial Web sites. They may be shaped into advertisements by activists. They may be read during legislative hearings and become part of the congressional record. They may be as brief as a caption in a photo essay.
Roxanne Goeltz is an air trafﬁc controller. ∞∏ She attended a regional conference on patient safety, where the keynote speaker made a comparison between safety concerns in medicine and in aviation. ’’∞π Based on her decades of experience in a ﬁeld in which preventing two airplanes from colliding—the ultimate systems error—was a task faced multiple times every day, she quickly grasped that clinical medicine similarly presented myriad opportunities for error and for error prevention. ’’∞∫ That is, she recognized that medical errors are not inexplicable aberrations, but they can be analyzed cognitively as systems failures and prevented through systems improvements.
During his hospitalization, two catheters were placed in his right hand, blocking circulation; as the result of this mistake, his right hand and forearm had to be amputated. Levine recalls how she was told about the error: . . the neurosurgeon met me in the hall. He seemed very angry. ‘‘There was a mistake,’’ he said. ‘‘The catheter used to measure arterial gases became clogged, and a new catheter was placed on the same hand instead of the other hand. You never put two sticks in one hand. ’’ He then said, ‘‘It wasn’t noticed for twenty-four hours,’’ the passive voice subtly deﬂecting responsibility from a human agent.
After Harm: Medical Error and the Ethics of Forgiveness by Nancy Berlinger