When it comes to the things that kill people in the United States, several causes come to mind. Drunk driving, cancer and heart disease tend to top the list in peoples’ minds. What many don’t think about is doctors. Doctors help and heal us, don’t they? In most cases, the answer is yes. But doctors are technically the third leading cause of death in the country — a fact that surprises many.
According the Journal of the American Medical Association, health care costs are not reflective of the quality of medical care available in the country. Among 13 leading countries in the world, including Japan, Canada and France, the United States ranks 12th. The ranking is based on indicators such as infant mortality, life expectancy and low-birth-weight averages. In a ranking put forth by the World Health Organization, the country ranks 15 out of 25 of the world’s industrialized nations.
A significant finding is that the general poor health of Americans is not attributed to poor choices as many think. Americans do not tend to have worse habits when compared to other countries. What research has found, is that there are approximately 12,000 deaths each year due to unnecessary surgeries, 7,000 deaths due to errors in medication and 20,000 deaths due to miscellaneous hospital errors. There were another 80,000 deaths due to infections contracted in hospitals and 106,000 due to prescription medications. Keep in mind that this is the average per year.
What needs to happen is a deep look into the current state of health care in the country. Too many people do not have access to health care that is affordable, and it is thought that doctors too often rely solely on technology and medication. This heavy reliance may be leading to errors that would be reduced if doctors used a more personalized approach to medicine. That people in the richest country in the world are dying at the hands of medical professionals is not something that can be ignored.
If you believe that you have been the victim of medical malpractice, call our offices today. A member of our team will review the details of your case at no cost to you and advise you how to best proceed. Call us now.