Fatal Medication Errors Rise in July at Teaching Hospitals

Researchers say arrival of new medical residents at least partly explains the increase
By Beth Gilbert
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, June 8 (HealthDay News) -- In July there is a significant increase in fatal medication errors at medical institutions, and this spike is at least partly due to the arrival of new medical residents, according to a study published online May 29 in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

David P. Phillips, Ph.D., of the University of California at San Diego in La Jolla, and Gwendolyn E.C. Barker, of the University of California at Los Angeles, examined 62,338,584 U.S. death certificates from 1979 to 2006, and looked at 244,388 medication errors to compare the observed number of deaths in July with the number expected, both inside and outside medical institutions, as well as in counties with and without teaching hospitals.

The researchers found that fatal medication errors spiked in July by 10 percent -- but in no other month -- inside medical institutions in counties with teaching hospitals. The higher the concentration of teaching hospitals in an area, the greater the rise in fatal medication errors occurring in July. However, in counties without teaching hospitals, no spike in fatal medication errors occurred during the month.

"After assessing competing explanations, we concluded that the July mortality spike results at least partly from changes associated with the arrival of new medical residents," the authors write.

Abstract
Full Text

Copyright © 2010 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Powered by

jQuery UI Accordion - Default functionality

For life-long learning and continuing professional development, come to Lippincott's NursingCenter.

Nursing Jobs Plus
Featured Jobs
Recommended CE Articles Recommended Nursing Articles

Dogs as Pets, Visitors, Therapists and Assistants
Home Healthcare Nurse, November/December 2014
Free access will expire on January 5, 2015.


Tracheostomy Care
Nursing2014 Critical Care, November 2014
Free access will expire on December 22, 2014.


Effective management of ARDS
The Nurse Practitioner, 13December 2014
Free access will expire on December 22, 2014.


More Recommended Articles

Subscribe to Recommended Articles

Evidence Based Practice Skin Care Network NursingCenter Quick Links What’s Trending Events