Distracted Doctors Linked To Medical Errors
Recent studies have diagnosed a growing problem in operating rooms: Distracted doctors and surgical staff are at times texting or surfing the web while performing patient procedures.
It has led to medical errors and lawsuits.
By Andrew Chow from Findlaw.com
Recent studies have diagnosed a growing problem in operating rooms: Distracted doctors and surgical staff are often texting or surfing the web while performing patient procedures. It has led to medical errors and lawsuits.
“My gut feeling is lives are in danger,” a doctor and author of one of the studies told The New York Times. “We’re not educating people about the problem, and it’s getting worse.”
Case in point: a patient in Colorado who was left partly paralyzed, allegedly by a distracted doctor. The neurosurgeon made at least 10 personal calls on his cell phone during the operation, the patient’s lawyer told The Times.
The patient’s lawsuit was settled out of court, and the lawyer declined to provide more details.
While medical professionals are expected to multitask, experts say distracted doctors are taking it to a dangerous new level. The Times quoted doctors who’ve witnessed others texting, updating Facebook, and shopping at Amazon and eBay during surgery.
And it’s not just distracted doctors. Half of heart-monitor technicians say they’ve texted during surgery, according to a survey in Perfusion, a heart-surgery journal. Even more technicians, 55%, say they’ve made cell phone calls while in surgery — though 40% admitted it was an unsafe practice.
For full article in the New York Times see;
As Doctors Use More Devices, Potential for Distraction Grows (New York Times article)
Other Related Resources:
- Texting During Surgery?! The Risks of ‘Distracted Doctoring‘ (AARP)
- Distracted Doctoring: Physicians Text, Check Facebook in the OR (Becker’s Hospital Review)
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