Wrong Side Brain Surgery Sparks Investigation Into SSM Health Care Hospital

The stakes are very high when it comes to brain surgery.

We would like to think that brain surgeons take every precaution to prevent making mistakes like performing surgery on the wrong side of the brain. However, one alarming case that happened several months ago at a St. Louis area SSM Health Care Hospital shows that although this mistake is rare, it is a horrible reality for one patient.
Documentation shows that it has only occurred about once a year since the 1960s. But this mistake can have such devastating and traumatic effects for both patients and their families that any instance of this error is one too many.

National experts agree that when this error occurs, it signifies a greater problem within the institution, its protocol, and the way that it handles quality control, and is indicative of insufficient processes.

Chris Howard, who is SSM Health Care-St.Louis’ president and chief executive said that the incident was “a breakdown in our procedures, and it absolutely should not have happened,” as he issued a public apology on behalf of the institution.

Regina Turner, 53, a former paralegal, is the patient involved in the medical malpractice incident. Her brain surgery took place on April 4, and the medical mistake highlights the problems that are allegedly present in the St. Clare Health Center in Fenton, and also brings to light the major deficiencies in consumers’ understanding of hospital performance.

Consumers/potential patients rarely have any knowledge or any way of acquiring any knowledge about hospital performance or safety records, including information about surgical mistakes. This leaves Missouri residents in the dark regarding quality of care in very many situations, unless they hear about errors from news media or reports of litigation.

Many are pointing to weaknesses in both Missouri and federal laws, which allow for these limitations in consumer knowledge. Most states require that hospitals report any serious medical errors, and many states necessitate having a public database of info cataloguing these incidents. Missouri, however, is not one of these states, which means that the public is kept in the dark and malpractice may stay hidden.

This serious mistake has sparked several serious investigations, aimed at determining the root of the problem and ensuring that this will never happen again. SSM plans on sharing the results of its investigation with several patient safety organizations. Howard stated that while he could not comment on the incident because of the pending litigation, the institution has a strong idea of what happened and has already put safeguards in place to prevent any such accidents from happening again.

Wrong Side Brain Surgery Lawyer

If you or a loved one has been the victim of medical malpractice in Missouri, contact a St. Louis medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible. Litigation is an important way to protect your own legal rights, as well as the safety of other patients. A Missouri medical malpractice attorney can help you to get the compensation you deserve and hold the health providers responsible for their negligent actions.

To speak with a St. Louis medical malpractice lawyer contact the Zevan and Davidson Law Firm by calling (314) 588-7200 or by filling out our online contact form.  Our team of legal professionals has a reputation for recovering millions of dollars in compensation in high stakes medical malpractice cases. Contact us today to schedule a free and private consultation.

Missouri Medical Malpractice Lawyer

If you have suffered as a result of medical malpractice, contact our legal team right away. Waiting to seek legal representation can prevent you from filing a claim and receiving the compensation you deserve.


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