Soapbox is Donaghue’s blog. We view Soapbox as a place for the Foundation and its grantees, advisers and colleagues to step up on the soapbox to express views and share knowledge related to healthcare innovation, medical research and education, and the challenges of putting evidence to action to improve health.
July 8, 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to rage across the country. The death toll just surpassed 100,000 in less than 3 months, the same number as the annual deaths from medical errors reported in the 1999 Institute of Medicine landmark publication “To Err is Human: Building a Safer Health System”. Other studies put the number of premature deaths to be as high as 400,000. Understandably, all the attention has focused on the dreadful toll of the pandemic and on the heroic efforts to save lives and contain its spread. So far, there has been no attention paid to any incidental health benefits, including mortality rates, of the pandemic perhaps because there are no examples in modern history when we have experienced such a sudden, widespread and long-lasting vanishing of non-emergency health services.