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What Are Never Events?


The term “never event” was coined in 2001 and refers to medical mistakes that should never occur. These mistakes are serious and shocking, like amputating the wrong leg or leaving a tool inside of a patient during surgery. 

Although the most well known never events occur during surgery, these mistakes can occur throughout the healthcare field and frequently lead to the death or serious injury of a patient. The list of 29 “serious reportable events” includes:

  • Surgery performed on the wrong body part
  • Surgery performed on the wrong patient
  • Retention of a foreign object
  • The use of contaminated drugs
  • Misuse of a medical device
  • Maternal mortality
  • Birth injuries
  • Patient suicide or self-harm
  • Patient disappearance
  • Medication errors

While the above excerpt is not exhaustive, anyone who has been subjected to one of the aforementioned never events has grounds for a medical malpractice claim.

Filing a claim cannot undo the serious error or its consequences, but it can help you and your family recover from your losses and move forward.

Gross Negligence

One of the most devastating aspects of never events is that they are almost always preventable. According to NBC News, half of the injuries already caused by medical errors could have been avoided altogether.

If a little more care could have stopped your life-changing injury from happening, you have every right to hold your healthcare providers responsible for their negligence.

Preventing Never Events

Many organizations are coming up with new systems to decrease the likelihood of never events. Most researchers agree that increasing patient engagement lowers the chance of these errors.

If you have an upcoming medical procedure, be sure to ask questions and speak up if anything seems off.

If you’ve already been harmed, however, the best way to prevent future mistakes is to hold your provider accountable.

Pursue Justice Today

David C. Rash has made a career of protecting patients just like you. For over 25 years, our firm has been standing up to negligent institutions and individuals to hold them responsible for their wrongdoings.

Take the first step forward today by calling us at (954) 914-7116 and requesting a consultation.

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