Software shows potential to reduce radiology errors

Accurate diagnoses for medical patients in Ohio often relies on the results of tests like ultrasounds and X-rays. A research team that studied the efficacy of a software system meant to catch data entry errors made by radiologists and sonographers found significant potential to reduce mistakes that could lead to a misdiagnosis and delayed or ineffective treatment.

The results as published in the Journal of the American College of Radiology showed that the software caught errors in 6 to 28 percent of ultrasound or radiology reports. The system also improved efficiency by shortening the time that practitioners spent making reports. This would result in labor savings for medical institutions.

Although many of the errors that the researchers identified were relatively minor, they still could lead to negative consequences for patients. Radiology report errors are a source of lawsuits when they cause physicians to misdiagnose illnesses or mismanage treatments. When physicians fail to properly diagnose a medical problem, the patient's condition could worsen. This scenario often causes a patient to endure longer and more expensive hospitalizations.

When a patient suffers harm because of medical errors or negligence on the part of a physician or hospital, legal assistance might prove beneficial. Medical malpractice cases face high standards of proof in the legal system, and Columbus, Ohio, medical malpractice injury lawyers could gather evidence to support a lawsuit. Access to independent medical experts provided by a lawyer could allow the patient to present a strong case. After filing court papers, a lawyer could open negotiations with the medical provider and its insurer. If this effort does not produce an acceptable settlement, then the case could be presented in court.

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