Margaret A.WinkerMD, Deputy EditorIndividualAuthorPhil B.FontanarosaMD, Interim CoeditorIndividualAuthor
Copyright 1999 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved.
Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.1999
In Reply: Dr Porter suggests that our article
describes a simple case of a single physician's "inexcusable" naiveté,
coupled with the patient's failure to prepare for the visit. This is a classic
approach to mistakes in health care: blame the individuals and move on, but
unfortunately, we get nowhere. Although my physician and I contributed to
the problem, focusing on blame distracts attention from why things went wrong
and how we might correct them. Taking Porter's cue, perhaps understanding
how we each contributed would allow us to learn about the real causes of the
problem and to work on correcting those causes.1
Otherwise, we are doomed to repeat the errors.
Kenagy JW. Health Care Service Quality—Reply. JAMA. 1999;282(14):1330-1331. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-282-14-jbk1013