In 2000, the Institute of Medicine issued a report showing that a significant number of patients are harmed in hospitals due to unintentional errors. All health care settings have since focused on making the prevention of hospital errors a top priority. People come to hospitals when they feel sick and vulnerable and deserve a hospital that is as safe as it can possibly be. Hospitals should be the safest place for patients. If a hospital ever harms a patient, it has gone against its fundamental mission, yet there were approximately 98,000 deaths in the United States due to hospital errors last year. That’s more than motor vehicle accidents, breast cancer and AIDS.
At Women & Infants, we work continually to do all we can to ensure that this is not only a safe place, but the place that offers the best possible care. Patients also have a role, however, in helping to prevent errors while they are in the hospital.