Despite the widespread use of the term “never events,” it is often misunderstood and misused. The National Quality Forum (NQF) calls never events Serious, Reportable Events (SREs), and they originally started compiling a list of these events that occurred in hospitals in 2002. Since then, they have created a comprehensive list of SREs that are involved in medical malpractice claims across the country.
Never events involve healthcare errors, errors that are the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the United States, according to Advances in Patient Safety: From Research to Implementation. These adverse events are required by state law to be reported; however, most medical and hospital errors are still grossly underreported in the country. These lapses in patient safety are a major medical quality concern and are much more common than statistics reflect. Additionally, a vast majority of these lapses in quality of care are preventable and often due to negligence.
The National Quality Forum has a detailed list of never events, which include categories like:
Because never events are events that the NQF states should never occur, a patient who has suffered from a never event listed on the NQF site most likely has a claim for medical malpractice. Every never event listed by the NQF is serious and preventable, and only occurs when a healthcare professional has acted negligently.
If you or someone you love was harmed by a never event, you are encouraged to seek legal representation. The team at Berkowitz and Hanna LLC can help you recover damages for your never event-related injuries. Contact us online to schedule a consultation.