How Medical Record Errors Can Put You in Danger — And How to Protect Yourself Against Them

Today’s digital resources allow for the seamless input, transfer, and retrieval of key medical information at clinics and hospitals. This facilitates more efficient and accurate care for patients. Unfortunately, even the most advanced tools are far from perfect. The same is true of the employees who manage modern software and equipment. Even simple errors can place patients at grave risk, as we explain below: Data Input While the potential for human error exists in all areas of the health care industry, medical records are uniquely prone to seemingly small mistakes with the potential for major damage. These issues often occur…

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What You Need to Know About the Recently Released COVID Vaccines: Part III

  Are you worried about receiving one of the COVID vaccines outlined in our last two blogs? You’re certainly not alone. A variety of side effects may accompany the injection. The good news? In most cases, these are mild. Keep reading to learn more. Should I Be Worried About COVID Vaccine Side Effects? Those who are currently reluctant to receive the COVID vaccine fear that they’ll suffer nasty side effects. The standard flu is often cited as a reason for skepticism, as people who receive this particular vaccine often suffer fatigue, fever, and a variety of other concerns. Unfortunately, some…

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What You Need to Know About the Recently Released COVID Vaccines: Part II

  Throughout the ordeal of living through a pandemic, we’ve placed our hope in the development of several vaccines at breakneck speed. Most people, however, have no idea how these vaccines actually work. In this portion of our latest blog series, we take a closer look so you can feel confident when it’s your turn to get the protection you need. Why the First COVID Vaccines Are Different COVID vaccines don’t look quite like the inoculations you’ve received in the past. Typically, viruses are inactivated or attenuated so that they’re less infectious. With several of the vaccines intended to fight…

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Lockdowns and Late Cancer Diagnosis: Is There a Link?

  While COVID quarantines dramatically reduce the spread of the disease, they also lead to a variety of unintended health consequences. Many of these relate to delays in preventative care, with early signs and symptoms missed due to a lack of testing or because these issues aren’t as easy to spot during telehealth checkups. Below, we explore the possible link between quarantine and late cancer diagnosis: COVID and Cancer Diagnosis: What the Research Says While research on the connection between lockdown and cancer diagnosis remains limited, data published in JAMA Network Open notes an alarming drop in the number of…

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Understanding the Differences Among Influenza, COVID, And the Common Cold

  Experts and ordinary individuals alike draw comparisons between COVID and the prominent form of influenza with which we’ve dealt with for generations. These are sometimes useful, as some of the strategies (such as masks and social distancing) used to mitigate the flu can also work for COVID. Still, it’s important to understand how these diseases differ, as we clarify below: Symptoms Both influenza and COVID-19 can prompt a variety of symptoms ranging from mild to life-threatening. People with both illnesses may suffer: Headache Shortness of breath Fatigue Fever Sore throat In some people, however, COVID goes beyond these symptoms…

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The Status of the COVID-19 Vaccine — And What to Know About Vaccine Safety: Part I

As we continue to deal with the uncertainty of COVID-19, one glimmering sign of hope keeps us from giving in to despair: the ongoing development of a COVID-19 vaccine. In the midst of so much bad news, it’s easy to forget the remarkable ingenuity and security of the vaccine development process. The highly anticipated vaccine first reached clinical trials a record 69 days after researchers identified SARS-CoV-2 as the force behind the outbreak. Since then, researchers have maintained this breakneck pace. What does this mean for the eventual release of a vaccine? We delve into the details below: What We…

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COVID-19 and the Increased Risk of Medical Errors

Could Doctors or Nurses Be Too Distracted By COVID-19 to Provide Proper Care For Non-COVID Patients? Health care professionals face a heavy burden in a time of COVID. Every day, they place themselves at risk of infection as they care for more patients than they’re equipped to handle. Many are alarmingly short on sleep, taking on extra responsibilities to cover for coworkers who have contracted the disease. Even if they manage to remain physically healthy, the sheer mental burden of working in healthcare during a pandemic can be difficult to overcome. Given the unique challenges faced by today’s doctors and…

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Keeping Track of Your Medications When You Have More Than One Illness Or Condition

Today’s Americans take more medications, vitamins, and supplements than past generations. A Consumer Reports survey reveals that the average American who uses prescription drugs takes four each day. If taken at the wrong time or under the wrong circumstances, however, these medications can prove dangerous. Thankfully, a variety of new apps and devices ease the hassle of managing multiple prescriptions or over-the-counter drugs. Top options are highlighted below: Make the Most of Your Mobile Device Set alarms on your phone to remind you when to take various medications throughout the day. Better yet, download a medication management app. These offer…

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The Pareto Principle in Medicine: Why Just a Few Doctors Are Responsible for Most Malpractice Cases

Medical malpractice is far too common. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, medical negligence is the third leading cause of death in the United States. But while many patients fall victim to negligence in the healthcare industry, most medical professionals abide by an impressive standard of care. The exceptions, however, cause horrific suffering. The Pareto principle may explain this apparent discrepancy, as we demonstrate below: What Is the Pareto Principle? How Does it Apply to Medical Malpractice? A common concept in everything from sales to HR, the Pareto principle states that 80 percent of the results in…

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Common Mistakes Hospital Administrators Make — And How They Can Affect You

Hospital administrators are responsible for keeping facilities running seamlessly. It’s not an easy job — opportunities for errors abound. Unfortunately, these errors can prove deadly for vulnerable patients, who depend on the skill of hospital administrators as much as they do on nurses and doctors. Detailed below are among the most common — and deadly — hospital administrator mistakes: Hiring Decisions Often, hospital administrators are responsible for overseeing facility personnel. This may mean making final decisions regarding hiring or employee termination. Those who fail to vet new employees appropriately place patients at risk of being cared for by incompetent workers….

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