Dr. Barbara Starfield of the Johns Hopkins School of
Hygiene and Public Health says that 250,000 deaths are
caused each year by “Iatrogenic” causes – Iatrogenic
is defined as induced in a patient by a physician’s
activity, manner or therapy. Dr. Starfield cautions
that these estimates are for deaths only and do not
include negative effects that are associated with
disability or discomfort. These numbers do not reflect non-fatal injures. Those figures must be
staggering. And what is the cost to the health care
delivery system? Millions to billions of dollars per
year.

If you are not able to tell an emergency room physician about your medical conditions, your medications, allergies and past surgeries, you may become one of the statistics.

Get a copy of your medical records. Have them
available in case of an emergency. Know what medications you are taking along with the dosage.
Always ask for copies of your test results. It’s always a good idea to keep your records on you so get something like MyMedicalCD (www.mymedicalCD). Especially if you travel a lot. Update it frequently, for it could very well save your life.

Remember – You are in charge of your life. Help doctors give you the best treatments possible. Take
charge today!

Jim Hogan

on Saturday, September 13th, 2008 at 8:24 am and is filed under Hall Of Health.
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