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Rand Corporation says data supports conclusion that emphasis on safety in medicine directly reduces malpractice claims

On April 15, HealthDay published information released by the non-profit Rand Corporation, documenting the direct correlation between enhanced safety measures and a reduction in malpractice litigation.  Rand found that from 2001 through 2005, California hospitals recorded about 365,000 adverse patient events and 27,000 malpractice suits (that number is in the hundreds in Michigan with a smaller population and very restrictive malpractice "reforms").  Rand found that in California counties where 20 well-established indicators of patient safety were adopted, there was a direct connection between improved performance and the number of malpractice claims filed.  There was considerable variability between counties, and in counties where there were 10 fewer adverse, preventable "events" there were 3.7 fewer malpractice claims.
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