Does Your Doctor Have The Time?

Andrew Sullivan —  May 29 2012 @ 9:01am

A recent study found that hospitals have some serious time-keeping issues:

Of over 1,700 devices checked [at four prestigious East Coast hospitals], only 3% were found to be accurate to within three seconds. One in five were off by more than 30 minutes; one ultrasound machine was running 42 years (and some minutes) early. The average error was a staggering 24 minutes.

Such discrepancies might have been responsible for drug dosing errors, missed or repeated procedures and therapies that lasted longer or shorter than necessary. In 2007 Andreas Valentin, of the Rudolfstiftung Hospital in Vienna, examined 113 intensive care units in 27 countries, finding that mistimed medications were the leading error in the administration of intravenous drugs, accounting for nearly half of all mistakes.