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Study reveals set protocols lessen risk of medical malpractice

There are apparently two schools of thought concerning the approaches that doctors take with their patients. One is based on the idea that the practice of medicine is not a set standard and that every patient is an individual requiring a specialized treatment plan. The other is that medicine is an applied science where standard treatment plans are most effective. A recent study seems to support the second ideal with possibly fewer medical malpractice claims needing to be filed. Patients in Pennsylvania may be interested in learning more about the recent study.

Three specific categories of medical conditions were selected for the comparison of the approaches of treatment. The first category was the optimal treatment for strokes. The patients whose physicians applied the recommended treatments as set forth by the American Stroke Association and the American Heart Association experienced the best outcomes, while the stroke victims whose doctors relied more on subjective methods did not fare as well. Another area of study was based on the prevention of additional cardiac events. Again, the patients who were treated with the recommended methods experienced fewer future complications than the ones whose doctors did not employee the full range of recommended therapies.

The third area of comparison was the operating room. The applied science school of thought concerning surgical procedures requires strict adherence to standardized protocols. The system calls for several redundant safety procedures that ensures that the correct operation is planned and carried out on the correct patient and site. The artful approach to surgery was shown to result in more surgical errors rather than less.

Patients deserve the best treatment possible and this study seems to prove that doctors who approach their care with a scientific mindset seem to fare the best. However, physicians are still individuals themselves and as such are prone to making mistakes, both in care and judgment. Pennsylvania patients are entitled to file a medical malpractice claim whenever they believe a mistake by their care provider has resulted in them suffering greater harm. A successful claim may result in financial recompense and possibly preventing other patients from suffering harm as well.

Source: Forbes, "Medicine Is An Art, Not A Science: Medical Myth Or Reality?", Robert Pearl, M.D., June 12, 2014

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