Trying to find reports about a hospital's errors? Medical errors happen every day, but not all of them are reported. Medical errors that are reported are now searchable in an online public database. Patients need access to this information in order to make the best decisions possible about where they wish to receive their medical care.
For several years the US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid operated a Hospital Compare tool. The comparison tool allows anyone to find hospital data regarding mortality rates for certain conditions, readmission statistics, failures in regulation, and patient satisfaction numbers. Never before available and just released in 2013, the new information provides data on hospital-acquired conditions (HACs). However, the information is only searchable via a downloadable spreadsheet. What type of information can patients expect to find on these medical error reports?
- Hospitals' HAC discharge rates
- National HAC rates
- A list HACs that occurred at each hospital
There are also existing search tools that help individuals find and compare nursing homes, physicians, and home health care providers.
The medical error data reflects many types of hospital negligence over the past two years, from inadequate cleanliness and failure to disinfect surgical tools, to post-surgical mortality and blood clot rates, to bed sores and slip-and-fall injuries. Infections from catheters, incompatible blood transfusions, and foreign objects left in the body after surgery are other matters addressed in the report.
Now that the data is public, patients have the freedom to make more informed decisions about their healthcare sources. It also places hospitals' reputations under the microscope, making it even more important for each facility to reduce their rates of error and provide the best care possible.