Understanding the factors involved in Clinical Error: Clinical Study Call for Participation

15 May 2023

Errors in medicine are a significant problem, estimated to be in the order of 47 million a year. General Practice is one clinical arena where error is more likely due to clinical decisions being made on a background of clinical complexity, undifferentiated symptoms and diseases, and multiple other. We are keen to develop a better understanding in how and why errors occur. GP Benchmark is a clinical studies platform designed to assess clinical decision making in a range of clinical situations. If you are a General Practitioner (GP) or Advanced Clinical Practitioner (ACP) currently working in General Practice, and would like to participate in this study, please visit gpbenchmark.com to register your interest.

Why Research Decision Making?

Decision making is a complex process. Environment, time-pressure, perceived and actual knowledge can impact the decisions we make. Previous research into clinical decision making and why errors are made are often conducted in a way that doesn’t account for these factors.

Significant event analyses try to account for these additional factors when things go wrong, however the process remains reflective. Whilst we try to understand how events unfolded to lead to an error, the truth is often far more complex.

This research tries to answer two important questions:

  • Can certain variables make errors in clinical decision making more likely?
  • Can a clinicians personality type, risk tolerance and experience act as predictors for which variables make decision errors more likely?

Ultimately, this research forms part of an overall vision to have just-in-time clinical decision assistance which alerts the user to specific risks personalised to them.

As an aside, this research also offers important information for us as clinicians. Understanding how the decisions we make align with our peers provides valuable insights for personal development, training and learning.

Discover more about Lancaster University Faculty of Health and Medicine

The Faculty of Health and Medicine at Lancaster University is committed to pursuing world class research. It brings together biomedical, medical, social science, and digital health researchers to tackle key challenges of the 21st Century within health and medicine.

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