Dealing with Failure: The Aftermath of Errors and Adverse Events

Published in the Annals of Emergency Medicine, the following editorial discusses what happens after an injury has occurred, or the “aftercare” of the victims of adverse events. The authors assert that there are 2 sets of victims after a system failure or human error has led to injury, and we have not done a good job of helping either. The first group of victims is patients and their families; the second is the health care workers involved in the incident. Patients and families, who are most obviously affected by medical errors, need several things from their caregivers after an adverse event. A safer health care system needs to include systems of care that continue after an adverse event to care for and support the patient, family, and involved caregivers in as many ways as possible. There is reason to hope that this change is already underway.

Effects on Clinician Health and Well-Being, Safety and Patient Outcomes

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