Many Oregon residents suffer complications due to physicians’ misdiagnoses yearly, and one study conducted in 2014 indicated that approximately 5 percent of all diagnoses issued annually across the country are erroneous. The problem has been difficult to overcome in the past due to its varied nature. The severity of its consequences can range from mild to fatal; furthermore, it can be caused by a myriad of issues including miscommunication, flawed imaging and symptoms connected to multiple conditions. In response to this widespread problem, a group of expert advocates from several organizations have formed a coalition meant to lower the national rate of misdiagnoses.
Members of the Coalition to Improve Diagnosis recently concluded their first meeting since the group’s inception. Their initial intent is to develop a plan of responsive action to upcoming misdiagnosis research.
The organization’s chairman indicated in an interview that it intends to engage parties at all levels of the health care system to improve training efforts. Currently, the Coalition is assembling an educational curriculum with the help of certified physicians and working with patients to build new tools to further help prevent errors.
A misdiagnosis of a medical condition can have serious consequences for a patient. If a potentially debilitating condition is overlooked, incorrectly medicated or treated with the wrong surgical procedure, an individual may sustain lasting and unnecessary damage. Some cases of misdiagnosis might indicate misconduct on a physician or hospital’s part, and patients in such circumstances may wish to speak with an attorney who has experience in medical malpractice litigation. The attorney may use sources such as established treatment guidelines and records related to a patient’s hospital stay to provide evidence that a client may be entitled to compensation.