Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Manager's Guide to Staff & Patient Safety - October 2016

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

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O C T O B E R 2 0 1 6 O U T P A T I E N T S U R G E R Y . N E T 6 3 scientific studies. That's not nearly accurate enough. What can be done to better understand gaps in safe patient care? As a cancer surgeon, I record the cancer type, the subtype, the disease stage, the patient's age and the patient's demographic information for every case I per- form — and all that info gets fed into national health statistics each year. We need that same level of scientific rigor to study the problem of medical care gone wrong. Is a lack of healthcare transparency also part of the problem? Absolutely. When someone develops breast cancer, everyone in the community is aware. When someone dies because of communication breakdowns, a technical error, a lack of humility, or over-treatment or under-treatment, no one talks about it. We don't have open and honest conversations about the problem. In fact, hospi- tals have a general policy of gagging doctors and patients involved in legal claims settled out of court. That's the exact opposite approach that we need to have. OSM Dr. Makary (mmakary1@jhmi.edu) is the surgical director of the Johns Hopkins Multidisciplinary Pancreatitis Center in Baltimore, Md., and best-selling author of the book Unaccountable: What Hospitals Won't Tell You and How Transparency Can Revolutionize Health Care.

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