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Medical Malpractice and Its Sad Truth

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The medical thriller drama House recently concluded its very last episode. Grey’s Anatomy, after a couple of seasons, is now floundering in drabness. So, where do we get our emergency room/defibrillator/stat on television rushes now? Sure we can just check out the news and watch all those accidents on the freeway but it’s unlike the adrenaline Gregory House can give in the remaining minutes of the show as he finally saves the patient in one eureka moment.

But seriously speaking, the diagnosis doctor who is notoriously in need of a tutorial on bedside manner is really a melting pot of all kinds of medical malpractice. If he had been a real doctor, he’s skating on thin ice. He saves the patient at the end of the day, yes, but medical malpractice is: what if he doesn’t? What if with his reaching out in the dark experiments, he further damages his patients?

That’s medical malpractice. And in real life medical malpractice is just as serious as the illness of the patients. In the states alone, the volume of deaths from health-related oversights is averaged at 195,000 annually.

In the movie A Little Help, a hubby is taken to the ER after a fight with his wife complaining of dizziness and difficulty breathing. The physician was a little annoyed. He grumbles that he had to turn around on his way home to care for the husband’s medical crisis, which isn’t very critical at all. His diagnosis: anxiety attack. He prescribes Xanax on the patient and lets him go. That night the husband dies from aneurysm. It turns out that while the doctor was looking for a heart attack symptom through EKG, he ought to have also checked for swelling of the arteries and veins. 

The Hippocratic Oath says, “I will apply, for the benefit of the sick, all measures that are required, avoiding those twin traps of overtreatment and therapeutic nihilism. I will remember that there is art to medicine as well as science, and that warmth, sympathy, and understanding may outweigh the surgeon’s knife or the chemist’s drug.”

Medical malpractice is also an assurance that the doctor won’t act careless and God-like in the treatment of their patients. It’s like an unspoken medical insurance signed between doctor and the patient. Medical malpractice isn’t just restricted to doctors. The term can be an umbrella for the whole medical care providers. Like for example, doctors, nurses, dentists, therapists, hospitals, clinics and medical corporations.

In Woody Allen’s Sleeper, his bored to death character goes in for a routine gallbladder operation that gets messed up. As he wakes up, it’s 200 years later. This is where his life gets exciting with rebels as well as becoming a spy and meeting the true love of his life.

If only the world is much like the movies and television, and our life gets better when surgical procedures go awry and a doctor saves us at the last minute.

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  • Posted On July 10, 2012
  • Published articles 10

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