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November 4, 1992

latrogenics: Complications in Health Care

Author Affiliations

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

JAMA. 1992;268(17):2442-2443. doi:10.1001/jama.1992.03490170114048

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As the editor of this new international journal correctly notes in the "aim and scope" statement printed with each issue, "iatrogenic complications are ubiquitous phenomena, well-known to virtually all health care systems." Nevertheless, this journal uses the term "iatrogenics" to include even more than these ever-present, physician-induced complications in patient care. Iatrogenics seeks to publish articles describing "resultant complications of the entire health care system, involving all the human, technical, and organizational aspects of the medical care process." These may include "faults in the basic and continuing education of health professionals,... nosocomial infection,... (avoidable) equipment malfunctions, and shortfalls of existing systems to monitor the safety of medical care."

This broad mandate grew out of the May 1990 First World Congress of the International Society for the Prevention of Iatrogenic Complications (ISPIC), and Iatrogenics serves as this society's new official journal. Both the society and the journal aim to attract a