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That’s right…research is showing that doctors in America kill roughly 225,000 people every year. This makes doctors the third leading cause of death after heart disease and cancer. In the Journal of the American Medical Association, Dr. Barbara Starfield of the Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health provides some startling numbers:

12,000 people are killed through unnecessary surgery

7,000 are killed as a result of hospital medication errors

20,000 are killed as a result of other hospital errors

80,000 are killed by hospital-acquired infections

106,000 are killed by drugs prescribed to them

Significantly, these numbers do not include individuals who suffer non-lethal injuries or other negative effects of medical treatment.

As Americans, we also pay the highest costs in the world for our health care. At these prices, shouldn’t we expect the world’s best health care? But we are not getting it.

Of 13 countries in a recent comparison, the United States ranks an average of 12th (second from the bottom) for 16 available health indicators. More specifically, the ranking of the US on several indicators was:

13th (last) for low-birth-weight percentages

13th for neonatal mortality and infant mortality overall

11th for post-neonatal mortality

13th for years of potential life lost (excluding external causes)

11th for life expectancy at 1 year for females, 12th for males

The numbers are appalling, and need to be addressed immediately. If an American jumbo jet crashed every single day, killing every passenger on board day after day, year after year, the country would be up in arms. This issue should be no different. Medical professionals who injure or kill patients through negligence need to be held responsible for the harms they cause.

One Comment

  1. Gravatar for Cindy Pelletier

    There is a subtle and insidious cause of death, disability, etc., involving the medical business (I refuse to call it a profession anymore) prevalent in this country. As a patient with poor health and recently found to have vascular inflammation of the spinal cord during neurosurgery (among other health issues), I was emotional pressured for 15 months by doctors insisting that my neurological symptoms, incontinence, speech issues, vision issues, balance problems, severe cramping, muscular spasms, and involuntary movement with muscle weakness are due to depression and psychological issues. This insistence continued even after the neurosurgery, a spinal tap showing positive for MS, and other medical tests indicated serious health issues (i.e. AVM of spinal cord, hemangioma of liver, 2nd stage kidney disease). I have reached 2.5 years with this psych label interfering with proper medical treatment. When a person is in horrible pain 24/7, falls 3-4 times weekly on average, sleeps no more than 3 hours a night, is offered medication in doses that are dangerous and lethal, vomits daily, cannot sit in a chair for more than a few minutes due to pain, they are apt to shed an occasional tear and feel sad. They are also apt to be extremely angry with the doctors who have branded them as a problem patient with mental issues. Having been born into a medical family, I have a very hard time respecting todays medical "business" people. They do not show the compassion and dedication that the doctors I lived with and grew up around demonstrated in their medical practices. Beating up a patient emotionally happens in many forms on a daily basis in this country. It can and does lead to death. There are those who are so ill and in so much pain that they find a way to end the problem on their own... how terribly sad! A doctor told me to leave the state where I reside and start over elsewhere. I am currently investigating a move to another country. I deserve real medical treatment and respect. Why isn't there anyone holding these medical business people accountable for their questionable practices?

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