Health professionals' practices can lead to the improvement of a patient's health or deterioration that causes death in some instances (Blinderman & Billings, 2015). Some of the causes of death from medical care arise from poor judgment, diagnostic errors, inadequate skills and communication breakdown. Physicians are required to train in recognized educational institutions as well as become licensed to gain permission to train (Physicians & Surgeons, 2018). Despite, the efforts of licensing and credentialing health professionals, patients can still be victims of medical errors.
Licensure and credentialing health professionals encourage safe medical practices that minimize chances of patients losing lives due to lack of adequate skills to treat them (Boulet & Zanten, 2014). When people attend recognized education institutions for studies, they are assured of acquiring the required knowledge to complete roles within their career roles. The licensure exam aims to examine the knowledge of the health professionals before they start practicing as a way of ensuring that they have adequate skills and knowledge to work (Norcini et al., 2014).
However, adequate skills and knowledge cannot fully prevent a health practitioner from making medical errors when treating a patient. A doctor's actions may be influenced by stress, fatigue, poor communication with fellow physicians treating the patient and drugs. Licensure and credentialing the health professionals cannot control these possible causes of medical errors (Makary & Daniel, 2016). Therefore, a licensed and credentialed physician can make medical errors which can result in the death of a patient. Licensing and credentialing a physician is not sufficient and more measure should be put to limit the chances of physicians making medical errors. For instance, physicians who make medical errors should be demoted as a form of punishment and those who make consistent mistakes that risk the lives of the patients should be unlicensed and barred from practicing as health practitioners.
Blinderman, C. D., & Billings, J. A. (2015). Comfort care for patients dying in the hospital. New England Journal of Medicine, 373(26), 2549-2561.
Boulet, J., & Zanten, M. (2014). Ensuring highquality patient care: the role of accreditation, licensure, specialty certification and revalidation in medicine. Medical education, 48(1), 75-86.
Makary, M. A., & Daniel, M. (2016). Medical error-the third leading cause of death in the US. BMJ: British Medical Journal (Online), 353.
Norcini, J. J., Boulet, J. R., Opalek, A., & Dauphinee, W. D. (2014). The relationship between licensing examination performance and the outcomes of care by international medical school graduates. Academic Medicine, 89(8), 1157-1162.
Physicians & Surgeons - Applicants | Medical Board of California. (2018). Mbc.ca.gov. Retrieved from http://www.mbc.ca.gov/Applicants/Physicians_and_Surgeons/
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