Allen R. Wyler
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When a brain surgeon discovers that a revolutionary computerized medical-records system is responsible for a series of patient deaths---and threatens many more---he must navigate a treacherous maze of conspiracy. And risk his life to expose it.
* A comatose man is given a fatal dose of insulin in the Emergency Room---even though he isn't diabetic.
* An ulcer patient dies of hemolytic shock after receiving a transfusion---of the wrong blood type.
* A recovering heart patient receives a double dose of the same medication---triggering a fatal cardiac arrest.
When the doctors and nurses at Seattle's prestigious Maynard Medical Center start making preventable drug and treatment errors that kill their patients, neurosurgeon Dr. Tyler Mathews suspects that something is murderously wrong with the hospital's highly touted new "Med-InDx" electronic medical record. But when he airs his concerns to the hospital's upper management, he's met with stonewalling, skepticism---and threats.
Millions of dollars, and the future of Med-InDx, are at stake. And powerful corporate forces aren't about to let their potential profits evaporate. Tyler soon finds that his career, his marriage, and his very life are in jeopardy---along with the lives of countless innocent patients.
used to say . . . just do it.” 4 “Slick . . . very slick. Where did you learn that one?” Tyler glanced up. Michelle was peering over the drape at him. “Surgery 101. Apply pressure, wait, and try to strike a bargain with God.” He made no attempt to hide the huge relief from his voice. He used saline to irrigate the cavity where the tip of Larry Childs’s temporal lobe had been. He stopped irrigating and waited for the bubbles to clear. The water remained free of blood this time. “Time to play
years. As I’m sure you are all aware, in November 1999, the Institute of Medicine concluded a study entitled, ‘To Err Is Human: Building A Safer Health System.’ It focused attention on the issue of medical errors and patient safety. The report indicated that as many as 44,000 to 98,000 people die in hospitals each year as the result of preventable medical errors. But the point is, 66 | A l l e n W y l e r very little progress has been made to correct this problem. Think about it. If the
had a point about needing to calm down. But not until the fucking geek understood the potential hazard they were facing. D e ad l y E r r o r s | 97 “Let me make this perfectly clear to you Mister Bill Gates wannabe. Your entire fucking company will be a one paragraph post mortem on page 14 of the Wall Street Journal if you don’t fix it.” When Bernie didn’t respond, he asked, “I thought you’d fixed it.” “No shit. I thought so too. But obviously that isn’t the case. What do you want me to
gripped his right wrist, trying to strangle the agony radiating from the burnt tissue. He heard, “What the . . . ahhh Jesus Christ, someone barfed.” On his side, knees against his chest, Larry Childs struggled to roll onto his stomach when something kicked his leg. A white hot ember glowed in the back of his mouth above his tongue, stealing his breath. “What the hell . . .” that voice said. “Oh, Blessed Virgin Mary, Larry, s’that you? What’s wrong?” Mr. Jorgenson was kneeling over him now trying
like he’s herniating.” “Herniating? People with epilepsy don’t herniate, they seize.” “That’s all well and good, but that’s sure as hell what it looks like from this end. Guy’s left pupil’s blown, both disks show four plus papilledema and he’s Cheyne stoking.” Papilledema. A bad sign meaning the nerves at the back of the eyes were full of fluid from elevated pressure inside the skull. “Cheyne stoking?” An abnormal breathing pattern. “Damn.” Obviously, something other than his epilepsy was causing