Chances of Death in Hospital Increase 41 Percent During Holidays

Here’s some cheerful news for you.

People who go to the hospital on weekends and holidays die more. Let’s look at this cheery news a bit closer.

According to the research, “When the death rates were adjusted for differences in age and gender, they were 13% higher at weekends and 41% higher on public holidays. The difference remained significant even when the researchers adjusted them to take into account other major illnesses such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease and organ failure.”

Okay, so the best advice here seems to be, even if your bone is sticking out of your leg, do not go near a hospital until Monday. And stick the bone back in your leg, by yourself during holidays.

Ah, but there’s more. With bad news, there always is.

The researchers said, “There are a number of possible explanations for increased deaths at weekends and on public holidays. These could include reduced staffing levels that may lead to:

· less thorough assessment · lack of specialist or senior consultant cover · lower levels of multi-disciplinary team care · poor communication at handover and · possible delays in investigations such as endoscopy.

Again, take out your planner and if are you are planning to have a heart attack, a stroke, of any other pleasant experience.. pencil it in between Monday and Friday and never on holidays.

And of course, like researchers everywhere, eager to get even more research money, the research team noted “It is very clear from our research that further studies are needed to understand why death rates are much higher at weekends and on public holidays than during the week”

But I loved this quote the research provided, “Sick patients do not always conform to an 8am to 5pm, Monday to Friday work schedule and physicians and facilities caring for patients need to be able to provide the same level of care 24 hours a day, seven days a week for acutely ill individuals. These data implicate our current health care systems as being inadequate …

Inadequate? Just because your chances of dying in a hospital increase by 41 percent on Holidays? Inadequate? I would say pathetic!

Wiley – Blackwell (2010, December 9). Weekend and public holiday admissions increased the risk of hospital deaths by up to 41%. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 22, 2011, from­ /releases/2010/12/101209074156.htm

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