The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) created the five-star quality rating system as a resource to help individuals, families, and caregivers find out more information about nursing homes (skilled nursing facilities) that participate in Medicare or Medicaid. The rating system helps to provide an easy-to-understand summary of three aspects of nursing home quality: health inspection results, staffing data, and quality measure data. Using this information, along with further research, can help individuals and families differentiate between high-performing and low-performing nursing homes.
Millions of North Carolina residents rely on pharmacists to dispense prescribed medicine and to offer assist patients in using their medications safely. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Pharmacology indicated that approximately 21 percent of medication errors that cause injury to patients are attributed to dispensing errors that occur at the pharmacy. These errors are common; however, there are multiple measures that pharmacists and patients can exercise to prevent these potentially costly mistakes.
Every year, over 250,000 women in North Carolina and the rest of world receive a diagnosis of ovarian cancer. Each year, 140,000 women will die from the disease. It is important that women do not mistake the early indications of ovarian cancer with medical issues that are less serious as doing so can lower their chances of having successful treatment.
According to researchers, medical errors of various types may be the third-leading cause of death in North Carolina and across the country. Various efforts to introduce artificial intelligence to the healthcare environment are often spurred on by an attempt to cut down on patient risks caused by human error. These machines often enjoy exceptional performance; one found in Oxford is reportedly capable of exceeding cardiologists' success rate in identifying a patient's risk of a potential heart attack.
Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers experienced by men in North Carolina and across the country. In order to determine the stage the cancer has reached, doctors use a PET scan for prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA). PSMA is an enzyme that is found in prostate cancer cells and in areas where the cancer has spread elsewhere in the body. It is very expressive and responsive to imaging, making it a target for PET scans that determine the current stage of the disease.
North Carolina residents should know that in rare cases, the West Nile virus can cause the inflammation of the brain and spinal cord. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there is no specific vaccine or antiviral treatment to address or prevent West Nile, but those with a mild form of the virus can take over-the-counter medications or fever reducers.
Some misdiagnoses that occur in emergency rooms in North Carolina may not be because of hospital processes but as a result of physicians' cognitive errors. Researchers conducted a study at an urban public hospital and found that 45 percent of the errors were the result of processing information wrong.
Around 80 percent of radiology-related medical liability claims in North Carolina and elsewhere are due to misdiagnosis, according to a new study. Worse, over 80 percent of those misdiagnosis claims involve patients who have died or suffered a permanent injury.
While people in North Carolina may expect to receive equally fine health care at any time of day, statistics show that going to the hospital in the afternoon may be riskier than at other times of the day. Normal bodily rhythms can often lead to a sluggish, slow feeling in the late afternoon. Productivity often drops in offices at around 3:00 p.m., and the same can be true for hospitals. Of course, the consequences can be much more severe when doctors and other medical professionals are too fatigued to exercise good judgment.