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Report: N.H. Hospitals Had Fewer Preventable Accidents in 2015

Wentworth-Douglass Hospital

According to a report from the Department of Health and Human Services, last year New Hampshire hospitals had 64 so-called adverse events - preventable accidents that harm patients.

The report tracks everything from pressure ulcers and falls to leaving a foreign object inside a patient's body during surgery. Under state law hospitals self-report the data, with the goal of pushing them to analyze why these mistakes happen - and prevent them in the future.

Wentworth-Douglass Hospital had six adverse events last year, including a surgery on the wrong body part of one patient.

"Surgery on the wrong body part is certainly something that we would aspire to not ever having occurred," says Malcolm Rosenson is the hospital's Chief Quality and Safety Officer. 

There were 12 percent fewer of these accidents in 2015 than there were the year before, although that number masks an uptick in wrong-site surgeries and injuries to newborn babies. 

Before joining NHPR in August 2014, Jack was a freelance writer and radio reporter. His work aired on NPR, BBC, Marketplace and 99% Invisible, and he wrote for the Christian Science Monitor and Northern Woodlands.

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