Writings and observations

Safer with sunshine

Will Oregon officials follow up with some incentives under the law to encourage reporting of medical mistakes?

It would seem a logical step. The Oregon Patient Safety Commission has taken the useful step of requiring reporting, and then analyzing the reporting, of mistakes made in the course of medical care. It is now working on administrative rules on the subject.

Still, how good – how useful – the numbers are will depend a great deal on to what extent medical professionals ‘fess up instead of cover up. The incentives, most especially liability concerns, all run in the coverup direction to date. That will constitute a major challenge.

If the commission gets past it, it may be on the verge of a breakthrough.

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