In addition, there are no regulations with respect to hospital fees so hospitals are free to charge a captive public whatever they wish for medical treatment without disclosing their fees in advance.
Preventable medical errors in hospitals are the third leading cause of death. If ambulatory surgical centers, doctors offices and nursing homes are included there is compelling evidence that medical errors may be the leading cause of death. It is a hidden epidemic.
1 in 5 adults have experienced a medical error
1 in 3 hospital patients experience a preventable medical error
medical errors cost our economy about $1 trillion annually, almost 1/3 of all health care costs
health care is approximately 18% of our Gross Domestic Product, the highest in the world
the U.S. ranks last in overall healthcare system performance compared to other industrialized nations
medical bills are the number one cause of personal bankruptcy
hospital owners and CEO’s are not held accountable for preventable deaths that occur at their facilities and are not required to inform the public or community they serve
when preventable harm occurs to a hospital patient the hospital and attending physician are not legally required to, and often do not, inform the patient or their family, accept responsibility, admit that harm has occurred or make meaningful change, even when the patient dies as a result
local media companies, in most cases, won’t investigate or report about preventable hospital deaths because they profit from hospital advertising
since the information is suppressed people aren't aware of the public health threat in their local community that is causing preventable deaths and injuries
since the information is suppressed people have a false sense of security and trust when receiving medical treatment and they don’t take the necessary precautions to protect themselves and their families from harm
The hospital and medical industries lobby against any legislation which might reduce physical or financial harm to patients but threatens their profits or autonomy. Their budgets for lobbying are some of the best funded in the country totalling approximately $41 million in 2016.
In individual cases of harm which result in lawsuits, hospitals with annual profits in the tens or hundreds of millions of dollars employ teams of attorneys to successfully fight all but the most egregious cases, invariably settling out of court without publicity or fanfare and requiring strict confidentiality in order to maintain an information blackout so that the community is not informed.