What Is Informed Consent, and Why Is It Important?


Going to a hospital or an emergency healthcare provider can be an overwhelming experience for many people. Often, you’re asked to fill out reams of complicated paperwork while you are in pain. You sign insurance documents, waivers, and other medical forms, including one stating you give your informed consent agreeing to the procedure that is about to take place. But did the doctor or healthcare provider have a sincere conversation with you? Did you have the requisite information needed to give your consent? Were you a victim of hospital negligence? Informed consent violations by a medical professional can lead to…

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Is There a Limit to Compensation on Washington DC Medical Malpractice Cases?


      You place your full faith and complete trust in doctors, nurses, and health care providers to give you the very best care and follow a strict code of medical ethics. When medical malpractice occurs, it can be devastating for you and your family, causing pain, suffering, lost wages, and emotional distress. Patients can sue healthcare providers for their injuries, but do Washington D.C. medical malpractice laws limit the amount of compensation a person can receive?    The District of Columbia has strict statutes of limitations for when a person can file a lawsuit seeking damages for medical…

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Are Washington DC Hospitals Safe?


When you go to a hospital in Washington D.C., you expect the facility to adhere to minimum health and safety standards. Whether your visit is for a minor procedure or major, life-saving surgery, you have a right to feel safe within the building and among the people dedicated to caring for you. But almost all major hospitals across the District of Columbia routinely receive failing grades for health and safety, leaving patients open to severe injury and healthcare professionals liable for medical malpractice.   According to the nonprofit organization Leapfrog Group, which grades healthcare facilities on safety initiatives, almost every…

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When Doctors Become Patients: How Doctors Navigate Personal Health Care Issues — And What Patients Can Learn


Conundrums abound in the health care sector, but one of the most common involves medical professionals’ struggle to take their own advice. Many engage in problematic habits, often while neglecting to receive the targeted care they recommend for their patients. While many doctors and nurses are reluctant to seek medical care, this is as valuable for them as it is for the patients they serve. If anything, it’s more important; health issues among doctors make medical errors more likely, as verified by a growing body of research. The concept of doctor as patient is intriguing — and it can tell…

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The Dark Side of Artificial Intelligence in Medicine


Artificial intelligence (AI) promises to revolutionize the health care industry. AI’s efficiency and accuracy — combined with human creativity and empathy — could usher in a new era of medical treatment, in which diseases and conditions that once seemed untouchable can finally be addressed. Already, AI systems have produced marked improvements in diagnosis solutions such as X-rays and CAT scans. These may come at a cost, however, as the many opportunities presented by artificial intelligence in medicine are accompanied by a few significant risks. In a perfect world, AI would only be used for good. The unfortunate reality remains, however,…

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Post-COVID Stress And Burnout Among Health Care Workers: How Does it Put Patients at Risk?


During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, burnout was at an all-time high among health care professionals. This was abundantly clear in the survey “Coping with COVID,” which revealed that 61 percent of health care workers feared transmission. Alarmingly, over one in three of respondents also claimed to suffer anxiety or depression, while 43 percent noted an excessive workload. This wave of post-COVID stress is sure to have real implications on the quality of care delivered. Still, the work environment within medical facilities looks a bit different these days than it did one year ago. Equipment shortages are less common…

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The Gender Gap in Medical Trials: What to Know


When you examine medical research — or place your trust in health care providers who delve into this research on your behalf — you trust that experts have taken every step necessary to control for variables that might affect the results. Unfortunately, while many studies are trustworthy, some researchers neglect to account for factors that can have a huge impact on outcomes. This, in turn, may affect the health of countless patients. Often, those who bear the brunt of the damage are female, thanks to an enduring gender gap in medical trials. Researchers from the University of Chicago and the…

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Best Practices to Improve Health in the Hospital


You’ve been admitted to the hospital, and, needless to say, don’t feel your best. Unfortunately, while a variety of targeted treatments promise to resolve your most pressing health concerns, other issues could keep you feeling ill as long as you’re stuck in a clinical environment. Fortunately, there are several small changes you can make in your routine to improve your health while in the hospital Hospital-acquired infections (HAI) are worrisome, of course, but they’re far from the only problems that limit your health at this vulnerable time. Holistic problems such as diet, lack of exercise, and sleep disturbances can also…

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Transferring Hospitals? How Information Can Get Lost And Lead to Injuries


When you arrive at the hospital for treatment, you assume that you’ll stay there until you’re sent home. In reality, however, it’s common to visit multiple hospitals in succession or eventually transition to a rehab setting. Though often necessary, transferring hospitals can be a tricky process to navigate. Hospital transfers can be cumbersome not only from a physical standpoint, but also, because medical data must change hands on several occasions. Each transfer holds an opportunity for lost information at a time in which you may be unable to properly advocate for yourself. The following are among the most noteworthy risks…

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Do Stressed Nurses Make More Errors? What The Latest Science Says


Stress and burnout are huge issues throughout the health care industry. Nurses, in particular, are vulnerable. They work long hours in physically and mentally demanding positions — often with little support. Unfortunately, the latest research suggests that this extreme stress causes suffering not only among nurses, but also, for their patients. How Stress Impacts Nursing Performance Stress is part and parcel with the nursing profession, but at certain levels, it can be managed to limit the impact on patients. Many nurses, however, face stress above and beyond what they can handle on a day-to-day basis. Stress can negatively affect focus,…

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