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What Is the Long-Term Impact of Adverse Events on Patients?

Helen Haskell, MA; mother of Lewis Blackman, a 15-year-old boy who died from medical error; President of Mothers Against Medical Error; member of the IHI Board of Directors

Have trouble viewing this video? Read the transcript.

Learning Objectives: At the end of this activity, you will be able to:
  • Identify at least two long-term impacts of adverse events.
  • Discuss how compensation after adverse events can affect patients’ lives.

Description: Lewis Blackman, a healthy 15-year-old boy, died in 2000 after an elective surgery. In this video, Helen Haskell, his mother, gives an example of the long-term impact of adverse events on patients and families.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Who do you think is responsible for paying for medical care that’s needed because of an adverse event? What mechanisms do you know of to compensate victims of medical harm?
  2. Do you agree that death and injury from medical harm should be considered a preventable tragedy? Why or why not?
  3. Why do you think people sometimes don’t view medical harm as preventable tragedy?
  4. If you became disabled because of a medical error, how would it change your life?
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