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How common are never events in hospitals?

Never events, which are events that should never take place in hospitals or medical facilities, can be devastating to patients. Things like leaving foreign objects in a patient's body, for instance, constitute never events. If you've been suffering from the after-effects of a never event, then your attorney may building your case. These statistics may help you prove that you were injured as a result of lower staff levels or unsanitary environments that resulted from being at the hospital during the weekend.

In research looking into the days of the week when the most never events happened, researchers decided to break down their findings into weekdays versus weekends. The research looked at a total of 351,179, 803 patients who were admitted to the hospital between 2002 and 2010. Nineteen percent of those patients were admitted on weekends, while the rest were weekday admissions.

What has been learned from the research is a little bit shocking. Those admitted on weekends were more likely to suffer from hospital-acquired conditions like infections at a rate of 5.7 percent, while weekday admissions faced only a 3.7 percent chance.

The probability of getting a second HAC was over 20 percent higher for weekend admissions as well. What those findings resulted in was a conclusion that patients who enter the hospital on weekends are more likely to suffer additional complications from hospital-acquired conditions. Their costs and the length of time they have to stay in the hospital is more likely to be higher and longer than those admitted on other days.

Source: The BMJ, "Incidence of “never events” among weekend admissions versus weekday admissions to US hospitals: national analysis," accessed Oct. 08, 2015

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