About Careers MedBlog Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Biggest Threat to Patient Safety in Hospitals: Misdiagnosis by Doctors

by Tanya Thomas on September 12, 2010 at 10:45 AM
Font : A-A+

 Biggest Threat to Patient Safety in Hospitals: Misdiagnosis by Doctors

The central cause of avoidable harm to patients in hospitals, in a senior UK doctor's opinion, is diagnostic error.

Gordon Caldwell, a consultant physician at Worthing Hospital in Western Sussex, argued that doctors need better facilities and sufficient time to make a correct diagnosis.

Advertisement

When a patient is admitted to hospital, the team of doctors formulate a "working diagnosis," he explained.

At this point, the diagnosis is uncertain but the patient is treated as if the working diagnosis is correct.

"If over the next few days the patient gets better, the working diagnosis is confirmed and becomes the diagnosis," he said.
Advertisement

However, if the patient does not improve, "we think again and consider whether the working diagnosis was wrong."

He warned: "The time taken to reach the correct diagnosis may critically impact on the patient's chances of survival. Over my career, I have seen many errors in the working diagnosis causing harm and even death to patients."

Little consideration seems to have been given to how doctors make and refine the working diagnosis and treatment plan for the patient, he adds. "We must allow clinicians enough time to be careful in diagnosis, treatment planning and treatment review."

Caldwell said that the profession has failed to let our patients and society know about this very important problem.

He concluded: "We must design our working spaces and information systems to maximise doctors' ability to see, understand, and deliberate on the information needed for more precise diagnosis.

"We must allow clinicians enough time to be careful in diagnosis, treatment planning, and treatment review.

"We must urgently consider how to provide rooms, time, and information for doctors to do the most difficult part of their job and the part most prone to error: the clinical thinking in making the working diagnosis and treatment plan."

The study appears on bmj.com.

Source: ANI
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
What's New on Medindia
Test  Your Knowledge on Heart
Test Your Knowlege on Genes
Obesity in Teens Make Inroads into Early Atrial Fibrillation
View all
News Archive
Date
Category
Advertisement
News Category

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Most Popular on Medindia

A-Z Drug Brands in India Calculate Ideal Weight for Infants Find a Hospital Drug Side Effects Calculator The Essence of Yoga Selfie Addiction Calculator Hearing Loss Calculator Drug Interaction Checker Nutam (400mg) (Piracetam) Pregnancy Confirmation Calculator
This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use
×

Biggest Threat to Patient Safety in Hospitals: Misdiagnosis by Doctors Personalised Printable Document (PDF)

Please complete this form and we'll send you a personalised information that is requested

You may use this for your own reference or forward it to your friends.

Please use the information prudently. If you are not a medical doctor please remember to consult your healthcare provider as this information is not a substitute for professional advice.

Name *

Email Address *

Country *

Areas of Interests