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Originally published January 18 2010

Most hospital patients are unaware of what drugs they are given

by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, NaturalNews Editor

(NaturalNews) A recent study published in the Journal of Hospital Medicine has revealed that nearly all hospital patients do not know what drugs are being administered to them. The research revealed that nearly half think thought they were receiving one type of medication when they were actually receiving another and only four percent were able to identify at least one drug they received during their time there.

Researchers from the University of Colorado at Denver's School of Medicine conducted the study to evaluate whether or not hospital patients understood what treatments they were receiving while under professional medical care. Each participant claimed to be aware of his or her outpatient medications and all were coherent and reasonably informed. What the study revealed was that most patients do not know what drugs they are being given and the few that care to or believe they know are often misinformed.

About one in five hospital medication treatments was also found to be wrong, with either an improper dosage or an incorrect drug being administered. Since the patient is the last stop before a drug is administered, researchers are stressing the importance of patient awareness concerning drug therapies in order to avoid grave errors that could inflict serious harm.

Once out of the hospital, less than 15 percent of patients over age 65 could identify the medications they were told to take. Only 40 percent of those under 65 could properly identify theirs.

Study authors believe that increased patient responsibility and awareness about given and prescribed treatments is necessary in order to prevent medical errors and their potential for serious injury.

Comments by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger

This research reveals the sad, sad state of western health care. The statistic that one in five medication treatments were incorrect is nothing short of astounding. That means 20% of the drugs patients are given in the hospital are either the wrong drugs or the wrong doses.

Astonishing. No wonder so many people die in hospitals!

The other part of this research is just as startling: Most patients didn't even know what drugs they were being given! This speaks to the incredible dis-empowerment of patients in a western medical setting. When patients don't even know what medicines they're being given, it puts all the power in the hands of doctors and medical staff. And this study demonstrates that even medical staff all too frequently make mistakes that can be deadly.

The bottom line is obvious: Don't go to a hospital except as a last resort. Hospitals are dangerous places where frequent mistakes can easily lead to you being harmed or killed by carelessly-administered pharmaceuticals.

And don't expect to be kept informed of what's happening to you at the hospital, either. Real communication between doctors and patients is virtually nonexistent (because they're too busy to spend more than about two minutes with each patient).

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