Each day, doctors and medical staff perform surgery on patients. In rare cases though, mistakes are made during these procedures that can lead to a patient being seriously harmed.
One of the most common mistakes reported is when a surgeon leaves a tool or item inside the body of a patient. Estimates from the National Center for Health Statistics show that on average, staff at typical hospitals make such errors twice annually. These errors can lead to costly North Carolina medical malpractice lawsuits.
So, what’s being done to reduce the number of these errors that occur? According to an article from the Washington Post, advancements in technology may be the answer.
Some facilities are now implanting tiny microchips into the sponges and tools that are used in patients’ surgical procedures. These microchips emit a radio signal that can be picked up using a wand-like device. When the signal is recognized, it sends an alert that an object is still lodged inside the patient’s body following their procedure.
The technology seems to be a success. A study conducted at the University of North Carolina in 2012 found the microchips were effective in alerting medical staff to an object being left in a patient’s body on 23 occasions during an 11-month period.
At HensonFuerst, we applaud the efforts being made to better protect patients’ safety and health. Our North Carolina personal injury lawyers are also hopeful to see such technology implemented on a much broader scale in our state.