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Johns Hopkins Study Finds Surgeons Making 4,000 “Never Event” Mistakes Per Year

A recent study led by Johns Hopkins University and published in the journal Surgery, found that despite education and publicity, surgeons continue to make “never event” mistakes more than 4,000 times per year.  “Never event” mistakes are those that “should never happen in medicine,” like operating on the wrong patient or leaving surgical instruments inside the patient.

The study looked at 9,744 cases between 1990 and 2010 and found that among these cases, 6% of the patients died, 32.9% had permanent injury and 59.2% had temporary injuries.  The most common errors were:

            Foreign object left behind:       49.8%

            Wrong procedure:                     25.1%

            Wrong site:                               24.8%

            Wrong patient:                          0.3%

The lead author of the study, a Hopkins surgeon, stated that, unlike some medical complications, the surgical mistakes identified in the study are “totally preventable.”   

To read more about the Study click here: