Patients Not Safe Enough

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<p>Five years ago, the Institute of Medicine released a landmark report, <em>To Err Is Human,</em> which shattered widely held perceptions about the safety of health care in the United States. The report found that a variety of preventable adverse events contribute to more than 1 million injuries and up to 98,000 hospital deaths a year.<br><br>
In our August <a href="/cnlib/pub/enews_clickthrough.htm?enews_item_id=18172&return_url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww%2Ecmwf%2Eorg%2Faboutus%2Faboutus%5Fshow%2Ehtm%3Fdoc%5Fid%3D287032%26%23doc287032">"From the President"</a> column, <em>To Err Is Human</em> co-author Lucian Leape, M.D., adjunct professor at the Harvard School of Public Health, joins Fund President Karen Davis in an assessment of patient safety. Together, they argue that while some progress has been made in protecting patients from mistakes, error prevention efforts are isolated and uncoordinated, and more must be done.<br><br>

"We can't afford this kind of health care anymore," Leape and Davis write. "And we shouldn't pay for it."<br><br></p>