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Tuesday 18 December 2018
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Topic: errors

July 3, 2008
Study raises concerns over reliance on software without human intervention

A mistake in computer coding and not poor design might be the reason why some medical equipment fails to function, according to a study.

The latest equipment is now advanced enough to remove the need for doctors and nurses to watch for machine errors, but this can result in small glitches growing into big problems.

In 2004, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) established a forensic software department to look into the rise in cases of medical equipment recalls related to software problems.

January 8, 2008
Doctors are being warned that using abbreviations in medical notes is putting patients’ lives at risk

Doctors are being warned that using abbreviations in medical notes is putting patients’ lives at risk.

The UK’s Medical Defence Union (MDU) said difficulties often arose because abbreviations could have more than one meaning or might be misread.

The MDU said some patients had had the wrong limb removed or operated on and others had been given deadly drug doses.

A recent US study of 30,000 medication errors, some fatal, showed 5% were linked to abbreviations in notes.