The "uNoz Gud Medicin" Project (You Know Good Medicine)
Organized by: Richard L.G.
"Hopefully, together, we may find a way to lower, or even stop, the needless deaths that happen each year due to medical mistakes."
- A simple wish
The "uNoz Gud Medicin" Project is a survey designed to test the effective awareness of healthcare providers in the field with regard to information. In other words, are healthcare specialists really paying attention, especially to medical information, when treating patients.
Modern medical treatments rely so heavily on medical charting and patient-specific information that it has become essential that medical providers follow and assimilate all the information as efficiently as possible. Unfortunately, something is causing a spike in the number of yearly deaths related to medical errors. In 1999, the Institute of Medicine the estimated death rate per year was roughly 98,000. But in 2013, the “Journal of Patient Safety” revised the estimates, calculating a potential 210-440 thousand per year. Even then, this number is considered a low estimation because it’s widely accepted in the medical community that many medical errors aren’t reported for fear of reprisals, litigation, and/or punishment.
Hence, the concept of this study was born. What is causing the rise in yearly medical deaths? The United States has pushed effectively for the use of Electronic Medical Records, or EMRs. These systems are designed to flag, catch and alert users to potential complications, such as giving a patient some medication he or she is allergic. And yet, the yearly death rate by medical mistake continues to rise algorithmically despite these electronic precautions. Of added concern is the theory that for every 1 death caused by medical negligence, up to 10 individuals may be the victims of a medical error that won’t kill them, but could produce anything from “no harm done,” up to severe, lifelong consequences that are “permanent.”
That means that in a given year, 440,000 people may perish from a medical error while 4.4 million may walk away with some lifelong injury inflicted on them.
The “uNoz Gud Medicin” Project intends to study this phenomena, looking for specific details that may indicate the cause of the increased death toll. The project will be run in four stages, of which I present here Phase 0: Awareness and Phase 1: uNoz Art Book.
Phase 0: Awareness is a campaign designed just for that...awareness! While word-of-mouth and other communications are free i.e. Twitter, Facebook, the truth is that to reach a high number of individuals who can assist with making others aware often takes established communication routes. This means the use of radio, ads, TV spots at local stations, etc. This requires funds since these are services are not so readily cheap. Part of the funding from this campaign will be used to acquire these services, which will include:
- Radio spots
- Television spots at local stations
- Online paid services such as Facebook and Google Ads
- Website hosting for a more robust and dynamic presentation of information and findings to the public at large.
The remainder of the funds will roll into Phase 1: uNoz Art Book, the next phase to follow when the awareness campaign ends. It will study medical communications, looking for specific errors and key details. You’d be surprised how many mistakes in medical literature are passed off as “accurate”. Then the project will present these errors to the community at large in a book format that is easy to interpret.
I thank you for visiting this campaign, and sincerely hope you will contribute. Hopefully, we may make a huge difference in the way healthcare providers and patients interact!
Richard L.G., July 7th, 2015