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Louisiana hospitals using technology to fight medical malpractice

The potential role of information technology in limiting instances of medical malpractice can be significant. Through the efficient flow of information, hospitals that invest in modern information technology may prevent medication mistakes, misdiagnoses, and other medical errors.

In recognition of this and to encourage the practice of improving information technology in hospital settings, the annual “Most Wired” survey identifies hospitals that meet the highest standards in protecting patient information, efficient patient flow, and communication, which can minimize the prospect of committing medical malpractice.

This year six Louisiana hospitals were named as most wired.

The survey, which is undertaken by the magazine Hospitals and Health Networks, looked at more than 5,000 hospitals across the country. The criteria to qualify for recognition were stringent: of the total number, fewer than 400 of these hospitals were named as most wired.

The small number of hospitals that received this recognition highlights the high number of hospitals with room for improvement in this area. No hospitals however, despite those that receive accolades, are immune to making mistakes.

Hospitals are obligated to exercise reasonable care to keep their patients safe and healthy. Aside from the direct risk of harm or even death to patients, a failure to uphold this duty can result in liability in court should an injured patient file a medical malpractice or hospital negligence lawsuit and prevail.

It is encouraging to see improvements and recognition of technological advancements in Louisiana hospitals. It is important to note that despite these types of precautions, mistakes do happen. Anyone who feels they may have been the victim of such an unfortunate circumstance should speak with an attorney to better understand their rights.  

Source: The Advertiser, "Lafayette General hospitals win "Most Wired" award," July 10, 2014

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