(… and first a word from your moving-weary blogger…. sorry I’ve been away for so long! We moved during the past week and it was torture! I forgot how hard it is to move! But we are safely ensconced in our new home, and I’m back at it again: advocating, blogging, writing, teaching — anything for patient safety and effective medical consumerism.)
And as my first “return blog” — I’m pleased to announce that my friend and colleague, Patty Skolnik, will appear on Montel Williams’ show tomorrow (Tuesday, May 22, check your local listings for times) — talking about patient safety with a focus on people who have lost loved ones to medical errors.
A primer here for those catching the medical error part of this blog for the first time — between 44,000 and 98,000 Americans are killed each year by a medical error or misdiagnosis. Patty’s son, Michael, died from unneeded brain surgery and a series of ensuing errors.
Patty represents a group of people who don’t just process a horrible experience and move on with life. Instead, Patty, and others (including me!) have taken our very bad experiences to turn them into positives for others. Patty is the founder of Colorado Citizens for Accountability. I’ve written about her work before and no doubt you’ll hear about her again. The law she has promoted in Colorado to force open access to information about doctors who just shouldn’t be allowed to work with patients will be signed into law by the governor of Colorado this week, too. A big week for both Patty AND patient safety!
When I give my workshops and presentations, I always ask those in attendance to pay it forward once they’ve gotten themselves safely through a medical crisis. I ask them to help others and teach others. I ask them to pass the word that patients must advocate for themselves.
Special kudos go to those who take it a step further toward the bigger picture — as Patty has done. I’m proud to call her my friend.
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