How good is your relationship with your physician? Our doctors are only as good as how honest our communication is with them. It’s upsetting when they make a mistake – but they’re human beings, not demigods, and human error is inevitable. But when medical professionals we trust – often with our lives – don’t tell us about those mistakes, that’s when it’s really scary, as an article in The Raw Story explains.
It gets worse: in an independent study published by BMJ Quality and Safety 300 Primary Care Physicians said that depending on how big they felt the mistake was, they would decide whether to tell the patient. The patient’s right to know about any mistake, large or small, was not a factor in that decision.
Additionally, doctors admitted that not only would they not admit to mistakes they made – they would actively try to cover it up. Worst of all, they wouldn’t be sorry for either.
The implications are horrifying. Medical error costs the lives of 250,000 people a year, much of which is preventable. The trust we put in our doctors makes us vulnerable enough, and if our medical professionals are consciously obscuring and hiding their own mistakes, that trust is broken – and it puts us in even more danger; the doctor’s needs and position DO NOT take precedence over patient care and safety.