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Despite efforts to improve, medical errors still occur

It might come as a big surprise to Chicago residents that 90,000 people die annually due to infections acquired in hospitals, according to a report released in 2018. Doctors can be expected to get sued every seven years and more than 17,000 medical malpractice suits are filed every year. While the medical mistakes and surgical errors that contribute to medical malpractice are huge, several academic medical centers are attempting to save lives and improve patient care by taking small measures.

One of the steps that can be taken is to reduce sepsis risk in children. A recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that starting antibiotics, administering intravenous fluids, and taking blood cultures within an hour of identifying possible sepsis in children could potentially save their life. The study followed 54 hospitals and found that taking these three steps could reduce the odds of death by 40 percent compared to children for whom all three steps were not taken. No child should die from a treatable infection.

According to a study published last year, an apology can be a powerful way to deal with hospital errors and prevent medical malpractice suits. According to the researchers, apologizing and explaining what happened can go a long way in soothing a patient's anger.

A patient who has gone to a hospital to get treatment for a condition but walks away worse than before, especially from an avoidable infection is likely to be frustrated by their experience. Victims of medical malpractice may be able to seek justice with the help of an experienced attorney.

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