The high prevalence of medical malpractice

Medical malpractice has become a major issue in Hawaii and the rest of the country. Studies show it is responsible for 10 percent of deaths on an annual basis, and people are looking for reasons as to why and how they can be prevented.

According to US News, medical malpractice is the third leading cause of fatalities in the United States, with heart disease and cancer taking the first and second spots. It is estimated that performance improvement mandates, poorly coordinated care and system-wide failings are some of the major reasons why patient safety has fallen down the priority list.

According to Forbes, it is medical malpractice when a healthcare provider does not follow a standard of care when taking care of a patient. When this leads to injury or death, the worker or facility is considered to be negligent, and legal action can be taken by the patient or their family. In regard to medical negligence, complacency and tunnel vision are more common in provider error than the severity or type of procedure. 

One way to cut down on the frequency of malpractice occurrences is for patients to be proactive in their healthcare. They should do their own research and make a list of questions to ask at their appointment. Making sure the provider takes the time to answer the questions fully is important. It also helps to have someone accompany them to the appointment. Patients should not feel intimidated and need to speak up if they feel something is wrong. It is also a smart idea to get a second opinion and/or fire their doctor if they are not receiving the appropriate type of care.