Errors in the Machine Age
Since the 1990s technology and research surrounding robot assisted surgeries has been advancing. In 1999 the first robotically assisted heart bypass surgery in the United States was performed at Ohio State University. Robot surgical procedures present healthcare outlets with opportunities to decrease the margin for human error while increasing precision and accuracy. This can include surgeries done to address defects in babies who are still developing, helping to set shattered bones from car accidents and other traumatic events, and surgeries dealing with some of the most delicate parts of the body, like the brain. According to the New York Times, “robotic surgery has grown dramatically, increasing more than 400 percent in the United States between 2007 and 2011.”
Despite the promising prospect of robotic surgeries, recent findings are showing that hospitals have not been diligent about reporting patient injuries incurred during robotic surgeries to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Due to the lack reporting when robotic surgeries occur it’s difficult to know exactly how effective robot assisted surgery is. Likewise, it is difficult to gauge how much of a risk robot assisted surgeries pose. The underwhelming efforts of hospitals in reporting calls attention to a system in which oversight, enforcement, and consequences are needed when holding hospitals accountable.
In order to keep up with competition many hospitals have invested in robotic technology. Using robotic technology requires specific and extensive training. According to Crowe & Mulvey, LLP, errors from robotic assisted surgeries might occur because of improper training, unknowledgeable staff, or inexperience with the new technology.
Nobody should have to suffer because of robotic technology. If you or your loved one has been injured in a robotic surgery, contact a personal injury attorney today. An attorney will be able to guide you through your case and defend you to the best of their capabilities.