Trust, Forgiveness & Medical Mistakes

August 03, 2018

Since the moment of her birth, Abbie has been the recipient of multiple medical errors. Approximately 700 medical mistakes occur each day in the United States (https://catalyst.nejm.org), leading to death.  Despite experiencing a near-death mistake herself, Abbie forgave and continues to trust in the primary care physician who caused it. After the most recent mistake by another physician, however, Abbie questions if forgiveness is possible and instead considers legal action against the doctor who caused a brain hemorrhage.  Facing two different errors, Abbie explains why she forgave one physician, continues to distrust the other, and how the simple yet powerful phrase, “I’m sorry” can mean the difference between absolution and litigation.

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