logo_psnetA new study conducted by Harvard Medical Practice suggests that thousands of patients die every year due to diagnostic error.  Findings revealed that diagnostic errors make up 17 percent of preventable errors causing harm to patients in hospitals. Consequently, a review of decades of autopsies showed that 9 percent of patients experienced major diagnostic errors that remained undetected before the patient’s death. In response to this realization,  the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality has introduced a new Primer via its Patient Safety Network that can be used to identify and combat the cognitive biases and health system breakdowns that can lead to life-threatening errors.

AHRQ’s Patient Safety Primers guide you through key concepts in patient safety. Each Primer defines a topic, offers background information on its epidemiology and context, and highlights relevant content from the agency’s PSNet and WebM&M online resources.

To learn more and to read AHRQ’s full Patient Safety Primer titled Diagnostic Errorsclick here.