Top 10 Malpractice: Diagnostic Errors

Malpractice Attorneys Orlando

Medical malpractice attorneys in Orlando are not surprised by a new Emergency Care Research Institute (ECRI) report. ECRI, a sort of Consumer Reports for medical devices, says that in its list of the top 10 patient safety dangers, misdiagnosis is number one.

According to studies, doctors make the wrong diagnosis to as many as 1 in 20 patients. A recent report in the journal BMJ Quality & Safety says that adds up to about 12 million Americans misdiagnosed every year.

“Diagnostic errors are not only common, but they can have serious consequences,” says Gail M. Horvath, MSN, RN, CNOR, CRCST, patient safety analyst, ECRI Institute. She added that misdiagnosis may have caused “a lot of hospital deaths that doctors attributed to the normal course of a disease.”

Misdiagnosis Keeps Malpractice Attorneys Busy

A common example of misdiagnosis is when a health care provider mistakes a heart attack for indigestion or heartburn. Because of possible stereotyping, when it comes to women, a heart attack is often mistaken for anxiety. If you go to the emergency room suffering from a heart attack and they send you home with some antacids or anxiety medication, you are likely to suffer permanent injury. You may even die. Medical malpractice attorneys also see a lot of cancer misdiagnosis.


This is the complete list of ECRI’s top 10 safety concerns:

  • Diagnostic errors
  • Opioid safety across the continuum of care
  • Care coordination within a setting
  • Workarounds
  • Incorporating health IT into safety programs
  • Management of behavioral health needs in acute care settings
  • All-hazards emergency preparedness
  • Device cleaning, disinfection and sterilization
  • Patient engagement and health literacy
  • Leadership engagement in preventing hospital error.


Another big concern, opioid safety, is number 2 on the list and has been a matter of growing concern recently. This is not related to the street opioid epidemic that claims more than 60,000 lives every year. Surprisingly, it turns out that there is a big problem with in-hospitals opioid deaths. Overall, hospital error experts say that thousands of hospitalized patients die every year from this hospital error involving overmedication.

If medical negligence, malpractice, hospital or doctor error has harmed you, contact the Orlando medical malpractice lawyers at Martinez Manglardi. Call 407-846-2240 for a free consultation. Offices throughout Central Florida.



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