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Cameras in Operating Rooms Could Help Prevent Surgical Errors

The use of existing technology could be part of the next effort to reduce the number of surgical errors occurring in operating rooms across the country. A new movement is calling for the introduction of recording technology in operating rooms in order to prevent surgical errors that cause patients injuries or death.
In many surgical error cases that come before Atlanta medical malpractice attorneys every year, it’s challenging to identify the exact kind of error that occurred.This is due to the lack of proper documentation, confusion during the procedure, or intentional cover-ups.For many patients, this means that they are unable to proceed with a medical malpractice lawsuit because the evidence cannot support a successful result.

In the absence of any kind of audio or video recording of what transpired in the operating room, patients and families have to rely on the memories of those present in the OR, and whatever documentation was created immediately after the surgery. In many cases, these are insufficient to identify the kind of errors that occurred.

The new movement, however, is growing in popularity and calls for hospitals to install video and audio recording technology in operation rooms. One Canadian surgeon has designed a black box video recorder that would allow recordings of surgeries, and would allow surgeons to review their work. Think of the way star athletes review videos of their performance on the track and field in order to improve results.The surgeon believes that the same kind of logic could be used to allow surgeons to review their performance in the operating room, and fix errors when they see them.

The movement is already translating into legislation. In Wisconsin, a bill has been introduced that would require such recording devices in every operating room in hospitals in the state. A number of other states are waiting to see the progress of the bill in Wisconsin.

The healthcare industry, for obvious reasons, has not been quick to jump on the bandwagon. The hesitation is due in part to the large cost of installing and maintaining the technology, and also the effect that this evidence could have on medical malpractice lawsuits.