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Italy moves to cut diagnosis-related medical errors:

This article was originally published in Clinica

Executive Summary

The Italian health ministry is in the process of establishing a healthcare risk observatory, in a bid to cut the high incidence of medical errors attributed to faulty diagnoses, poor care or badly organised services. According to the national agency for regional healthcare services (ASSR), the initiative will also see the creation of a national database of medical errors. These plans follow an initial report by a commission set up to assess the risk of errors in each specialism and clinical setting. It has found that orthopaedics and trauma account for most errors (16%), followed by oncology (13%), obstetrics and gynaecology (10.8%), and general surgery (10.6%). Estimates of the number of related deaths, however, vary widely: between 14,000 (national anaesthetists association) and 50,000 (unofficial healthcare risk reports), according to the ANSA news agency. Medical errors are estimated to cost Italy around Euros10bn ($12.3bn) annually.

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