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Our Mission

Mission Statement

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Each year over 100,000 men, women, and children die needlessly and countless over suffer serious life-impacting injuries in hospitals and other medical facilities throughout this country.  What the medical industry does not want the public to know is that these patients are not dying from the diseases or injuries for which they originally sought treatment.  The muzzled truth is that these vulnerable patients are the victims of avoidable medical mistakes made by the very staff and entities they have entrusted with their lives and well-being. 

Whether the cause of death is a negligent physician who makes a hasty or wrong diagnosis, a sleep deprived nurse who overdoses or misdoses a patient with medicines from bottles that are often deadly similar in their names, or packaging or a lack of safeguards which could have caught a mistake made by an overworked caregiver, the source of the problem is the same – HUMAN ERROR.

Individually, the doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other staffmembers, who commit these unintended medical errors, are not bad people. Indeed, choosing a career devoted to curing the sick and easing the suffering of others is one of life’s highest callings.  But these health care professionals are working in, and are sometimes victims themselves, of a broken health care system that has become more and more obsessed with the threat of exposure to liability and protecting it’s bottom line, rather than being vigilant  about correcting the flaws in that system that are the root cause of that very exposure. 

MEDICAL (HUMAN) ERROR is one of the leading causes of death in our country. It kills more of our friends and loved ones than automobile accidents, breast cancer, or AIDS. Yet, because these avoidable tragedies happen one by one, over an extended period of time, and dispersed over a large, disconnected geographic area, the general public remains benignly ignorant of its pervasiveness.  After all, people die in hospitals, don’t they?  And the medical industry perpetuates this benign ignorance by what has been termed a “conspiracy of silence”; whereby nurses protect doctors, who protect hospitals, that protect drug manufactures, that protect insurance companies, which protects them all.  Whistle blowing could cost one their livelihood or that of their co-workers.  Medical professionals know that they are only one mistake away from being subject to litigation themselves and, therefore, are loath to report one of their own.  In the meantime …over 100,000 of our friends and loved ones die needlessly every year…one by one.

Unfortunately, this tragic open secret in the medical industry will continue until public outcry overwhelms the ”conspiracy of silence” and demands more public accountability.  Perhaps the airline industry is an example of how an industry’s accountability for its own mistakes, coupled with that industry’s desire for public trust can bring about real demonstrable change for the better. 

Though so many of us are inherently afraid of flying, commercial airline travel is statistically safer than walking. Why? Because on the now rare occasion when a commercial jet crashes and kills the 200 or more unfortunate souls on board, it is a dramatic event - tailor-made to be the lead story at the top of the news hour. The airline industry is aware that erosion of public confidence is on the line every time an accident occurs and, therefore, it understands that it is in their best interest to be publically accountable for finding the cause of that accident as well as being publically pro-active about remedying the cause of that accident so that it lowers the chance of a similar future occurrence.  In the end, HUMAN ERROR is always the cause, whether the accident occurred because of a structural flaw, mechanical failure, or pilot error. And so some system is redesigned or enhanced, or a new piece of equipment is introduced to minimize or eliminate that element of HUMAN ERROR which caused the plane to crash. Public accountability spurs innovation. That is why today we have the autopilot, cockpit color radar,  the gps, and flight instrument systems that virtually fly and land the airplane, thereby minimizing HUMAN ERROR. 

As stated previously, deaths due to medical errors happen one case at a time and so slip under the public radar. If reported at all, the story quickly fades away as just another faceless statistic, save for the families and friends who mourn their loved ones. But I’m sure we could all feel the dramatic weight of this silent tragedy if these 100,000+ victims were the passengers of doomed airplanes. That would be the equivalent of one major airline crash a day, everyday, every year. 

So where is the public outcry? This problem is solvable. The first step is an informed public that demands accountability and innovation. Please join us in taking that first step.

Our mission is to raise the standard of patient medical care by:

  1. Breaking the “conspiracy of silence” by raising public awareness of our broken medical system, so that the medical industry is compelled to become more publically accountable to society at large. Our model will be similar to that of the airline industry.
  2. Eliminating HUMAN ERROR

    Our goal is to serve as watchdog, advocate and facilitator in the development and implementation of systems, technology, and safeguards that maximize patient safety while minimizing the impact of HUMAN ERROR in patient medical treatment. We also strive to make the public aware of which medical facilities are vigilant about operating at the highest standard, so that patients may make a more informed decision as to where to receive their medical care.

  3. Patient’s Rights

    Patients have the right to know any information that could have an impact on their health and well-being so that they may assess their own risk and make a more informed decision in regards to their choice of hospitals, doctors, and other medical professionals by:

    1. Timely access to their own medical records, with the assurance that these records are in full, accurately kept as per protocol, unabridged, or altered in any way.
    2. Access to the “track records”, if you will, of the health care professionals taking care of them pertaining to any past cases of malpractice or reprimands from any state health boards.
    3. Access to an evenly balanced justice system when they or one of their loved ones is the victim of egregious medical error.

Our family has been the victim of an avoidable medical error that came close to costing the lives of our newborn twins.  The cause was a chain of HUMAN ERRORS linked from the drug manufacturer, to the hospital pharmacy, to the pediatric ward, and finally to the administering nurse who twice massively overdosed our twelve day old infants over an eight hour period with the anticoagulant drug, Heparin. We were lucky. Although a similar incident killed three infants in an Indianapolis hospital a year earlier, our twins survived.  Since this horrific time, we have heard from so many friends and strangers alike who have been, or know someone, who has been the victim of a tragic medical mistake. It is our hope that your family will not be one of the next victims. It has galvanized our family to try to do something about this pervasive, yet solvable problem.  Please join us in helping to minimize the impact of HUMAN ERROR in patient medical care.

Newsflash

Quaid Discusses Medical Mistakes

Quaid spoke at the HIMSS09 this year. Read this article of the discussion and speech that Dennis gave as a keynote speaker.

See the full article here...

 

Important Messsage

Our experience has shown that medication errors can and do occur at hospitals throughout the country, even the best ones like Cedars-Sinai.  We now want to work with hospitals to help support their efforts to eliminate medication errors.

 
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