Accidents in the health system: the death toll underestimated

presse-rapportait-316-morts-survenues(QUEBEC) There are many more deaths related to accidents in health facilities shows that the national government registry, says Lawyer of health, Jean-Pierre Menard. According to him, doctors say little accidents which they are responsible.

“We have not that impression at the College of Physicians,” replies a voice of the professional order, Leslie Labranche.

La Presse reported yesterday that 316 deaths occurred after a fall or a medication error or treatment in 2014-2015, according to the annual report of the National Registry of accidents. This is an increase of 15% over the previous year. The Ministry of Health only explain this increase. He argues that the deaths related to accidents are perhaps more reported by facilities.

But for Jean-Pierre Ménard, there are many more deaths caused by accidents in health institutions. According to him “316 deaths, is very, very short of the reality. We should talk of thousands, “said he said in an interview with La Presse yesterday.

PROBLEM “STATEMENT UNDER”

The Registry Annual Report acknowledges that there is still a problem of “under-reporting” of accidents and incidents, and therefore most likely also dead. “What is the most under-reported, these are incidents and accidents caused by doctors, and they are also the most serious events,” said Mr. Menard.

“Every year, I make maybe 30-40 prosecutions related to deaths, he added. In 90-95% of cases, there has been no incident report to the registry. And we talk about big negligence. For example, a baby died because delivery has been poor follow or has been poorly controlled. It’s never declared as an accident, that. We’re talking about medical errors.

It is not in the “culture” of doctors, he said, to report accidents. “There is a certain fear of blame, even if the legal process is not a declaration blame. We must work with the College of Physicians for that best educates physicians to the importance of reporting, “he pleaded.

The professional yet believes that doctors are “very aware” of the obligation to report accidents and incidents. This is provided for in law, but also the code of ethics since 2002, he said. So far, only two doctors went to the Disciplinary Committee for failing to make a statement. They were sentenced to a temporary cancellation of about two months.

“This is a very uncommon cause complaints. The College of Physicians does not believe that doctors do not report accidents or incidents care, “stated Leslie Labranche. Although the report itself identifies an underreporting problem without blame anyone in particular, the College contends that “it is not a problem that [it] is indicated.”

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