New Research Shows Medical Error Studies Overstate Problems

A new study by two physicians working for the Veterans Administration suggests that previous studies of mortality due to medical error have greatly overestimated the number of medical error-related deaths. According to researchers Rodney A. Hayward, MD and Timothy P. Hofer, MD, MS, previous studies have not addressed the likelihood of mortality in the absence of error. That is, would patients who died because of a medical error have died even if there had been no error.

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