April 7, 2008
Medicine mix-ups, accidental overdoses and bad drug reactions harm roughly one out of 15 hospitalized children, according to the first scientific test of a new detection method.
That number is far higher than earlier estimates and bolsters concerns already heightened by well publicized cases like the accidental drug overdose of actor Dennis Quaid's newborn twins last November.
"These data and the Dennis Quaid episode are telling us that ... these kinds of errors and experiencing harm as a result of your health care is much more common than people believe. It's very concerning," said Dr. Charles Homer of the National Initiative for Children's Healthcare Quality. His group helped develop the detection tool used in the study.