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New report reveals 77 serious health care errors

March 6, 2007

Indiana hospitals and health care centers committed at least 77 serious preventable errors in 2006—some of which even killed or seriously harmed patients, according to a preliminary report released today by the Indiana State Department of Health.

The report is the first of its kind in Indiana, but won’t be finalized until August because some data for 2006 errors could be delayed by as many as six months.

Indiana is the second state after Minnesota to require the reports.

Among Marion County’s major hospitals, Clarian Health Systems—the largest in the county—reported the highest number of serious errors: 15. Community hospitals had two errors. St. Vincent Indianapolis and Wishard hospitals reported one error each, and St. Francis hospitals reported none.

Statewide, hospitals accounted for 72 of the errors. Ambulatory surgery centers were responsible for the other five.

The most common errors were allowing patients to develop severe bed sores, leaving “foreign objects” in a patient after surgery and performing surgery on the wrong body part. The fourth most common error was giving patients the wrong medication.

The report will be made available on the state department of health web site.

This story will be updated.

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