Thursday, May 5, 2016

Medical error - the third leading cause of death in the US

by Felipe Nogueira


Published two days on the British Medical Jorunal, study estimates that medical error is the third leading cause of death on US.

Most common causes of deaths in the United States in 2013:

1 - Heart disease: 611k
2 - Cancer: 585k
3 - Medical error: 251k
4 - COPD: 149k
5 - Suicide: 149k
6 - Firearms: 34k
7 - Motor vehicles: 34k

2013 Causes of death in the US. Source: BMJ [1]


It gets worst: according the authors,  medical error is not registered on US death certificates.

The  authors conclude that "the system for measuring national vital statistics should be revised to facilitate better understanding of deaths due to medical care" [1].

Reference
[1] Makary MA, Daniel M. Medical error-the third leading cause of death in the US. BMJ 2016;353;i2139. http://www.bmj.com/content/353/bmj.i2139