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Doctor's Orders: Inside Advice For Safe Care, Part 1

With medical malpractice claims consistently high in the United States, health care quality is a serious concern for millions of people. Medical experts continuously offer advice to hospitals and physicians to help drive down the rate of serious accidents. However, patients may have more opportunity than they realize to take control of the quality of their care.

According to a doctor and professor medicine, patients should follow several recommendations to make sure that they're doing everything they can to prevent medical errors. 

1. Patients should think about their treatment goals in advance. Instead of coming unprepared to discuss concerns or questions, patients can prioritize the most important things that they want to address with the doctor. This ensures that doctors get to the patient's crucial concerns.

2. Unsurprisingly, doctors also emphasize the importance of taking regular checkups seriously. As opposed to more acute-focused visits that deal with specific concerns, general checkups can help doctors pick up on bigger patterns. With this big-picture context, doctors are less likely to commit misdiagnosis errors.

Check back later for the rest of this list of tips.

Source: CNN Health, "What doctors don't tell you (but should!)" Dr. Danielle Ofri, June 10, 2013

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