View Our Practice Areas

WHO report finds medical errors a top cause of patient deaths

Medical errors are a leading cause of death in Pennsylvania and worldwide, according to a new report from the World Health Organization. Worse, an overwhelming percentage of these mistakes are likely preventable.

The WHO report found that around 60% of cases involving patient harm around the world take place in hospitals. Meanwhile, around 40% occur in primary and outpatient settings. In addition, primary and outpatient medical mistakes account for around 6% of hospital bed days among patients from the 36 member countries of the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development, including the U.S. Nearly 80% of all patient harm cases are preventable.

The report also found that around 10% of all patients around the world suffer harm while receiving care in a hospital. Of these adverse events, almost 50% are thought to be preventable. Another 30% result in the patient's death. In the U.S., around 5% of U.S. outpatient adults suffer diagnostic errors. Further, autopsy results show that diagnostic errors are a factor in 10% of all U.S. patient deaths. When it comes to the cost of medical errors, WHO found that taking steps to prevent medical mistakes was much more cost-effective than funding the treatment of harmed patients. For instance, between 2010 and 2015, the U.S. saved $28 billion by implementing safety improvements in Medicare hospitals.

Victims of medical errors may have grounds to file a medical malpractice lawsuit against the at-fault doctor and other responsible parties. If the claim is successful, it might lead to a settlement that covers a patient's medical bills, physical therapy costs, wages lost during recovery, pain and suffering, mental anguish and more. Victims may be able to learn more about their legal options by contacting a law firm that handles medical error cases.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For a Response

Get The Compensation You Need. Contact Us Today

Don't Wait. Call Us Today For A Free Consultation

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy


Keep In Touch

Ches-Mont Personal Injury Law Center, LLC.
600 Creekside Drive, Suite 605
Pottstown, PA 19464

Phone: 610-427-5828
Fax: 610-970-3299
Pottstown Law Office Map