The social resonance in clinical negligence and medical errors

According to numerous polls and researches it became clear that the more experience, integrity and honesty the doctor has, the more often he would be wrong. This is where a doctor can demonstrate his wisdom by admitting mistakes, publicly discussing them, and trying to learn the ways to avoid them in future. Narcissism and ignorance, the belief that the risk of mistake is excluded is a road to new and new errors, the fact that may lead a specialist to legal liability. A universal position for the doctor in this case should be a detailed approach to studying issues and thorough exploration of all the manifestations.

diagnostic processClinical experience shows that even with modern medical-diagnostic equipment in hospitals, a sincere desire to do good, diligent and devoted work, most good doctors are not protected from errors of moral, ethical and professional nature. For example, radiological examination of the stomach in 30% yields erroneous data. The reliability of ultrasound diagnosis, taking one of the leading places in the paraclinical diagnosis, in cardiovascular disease ranges from 50-80% to 90-95%. According to a number of medical negligence solicitors, running their profiles at Solicitors.Guru (one of the most dynamically developing startups in the UK that allows you to find a solicitor really quickly), the percentage of difference in clinical and pathologic diagnosis is 10-20% of all autopsies, while the frequency of differences in comparison with basic diagnoses ranges from 4,7 to 21,6% of autopsies.

And this is where the social context emerges. Doctors, unfortunately, often witness ‘popular’ discussion and condemnation of medical errors not only by those who suffered an error, but also by journalists, people far from medicine, in mass media. In this publications the data or statements may be by sensationalism, the indictment in a crushing exposing tone report about an individual case. And, oftentimes, these statements are largely unqualified, written by amateurs and far from being impartial. ‘The public’ is often perplexed: how can we be wrong in an age of scientific and technological revolution, in the age of the fantastic development of pharmacological, biochemical, electrical, electronic, ultrasonic, radiological, immune and other diagnostic and treatment methods?

doctor-diagnostics‘The public’ does not understand that the amount of medical information is so large, so it can not be optimally learned and mastered by one person. As the number of known diseases exceeds 10 thousand items, the number of symptoms goes beyond 100,000 mark, while the number of operations and their modifications are counted in tens of thousands, the number of laboratory, clinical, biochemical, and other radioisotope tests is counted in thousands. This amount of information often leads to confusion even in an experienced clinician in matters of correct diagnosis and the correct choice of treatment. Most diagnostic challenge is the fact that the disease is often atypical, erased or disguised. Sometimes technical and laboratory methods for studying the data draw a physician away from the correct diagnosis and treatment. Therefore, the physician must not forget that technology is only an appendage of medical thinking, and not the factor dictating the decision. In addition, in recent decades a persistent upward trend in the proportion of elderly persons having a ‘set’ of comorbidities that determine the severity of the underlying and atypicality of its course is observed. Over the past 20-30 years the impact of adverse social, physical, chemical, physiological, mental, information stress factors on the human body has increased, which resulted in reducing the overall immunity of the population.