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The Life You Save: Nine Steps to Finding the Best Medical Care-and Avoiding the Worst

Overview

Millions of Americans suffer from indifferent, outdated health care; an estimated 40,000 incidents of medical harm happen every day. The good news is that you can prevent this from happening to you or a family member. Better yet, you can find the very best care in the world. Patrick Malone’s sensible advice and real-life anecdotes will inspire you to take charge of your own health care, make the best choices, and avoid serious harm. With the “Necessary Nine”—the essential steps to finding the best medical ...

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The Life You Save: Nine Steps to Finding the Best Medical Care--and Avoiding the Worst

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Overview

Millions of Americans suffer from indifferent, outdated health care; an estimated 40,000 incidents of medical harm happen every day. The good news is that you can prevent this from happening to you or a family member. Better yet, you can find the very best care in the world. Patrick Malone’s sensible advice and real-life anecdotes will inspire you to take charge of your own health care, make the best choices, and avoid serious harm. With the “Necessary Nine”—the essential steps to finding the best medical care—The Life You Save offers vital information such as:

• The single most important question you can ask your doctor
• When to know you have symptoms your doctor should not shrug off
• Checklists to help you get out of the hospital in one piece
• Where to locate the best surgeons and safest hospitals

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Robert M. Wachter, MD, Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, author of Internal Bleeding and Understanding Patient Safety
“Our healthcare system cures, but it also kills. This book thoughtfully chronicles the harm that can result from medical errors and poor quality care, and—most importantly—arms patients with information that will help them and their loved ones avoid becoming a victim. Read it, and stay safe.”

Chris Matthews, host of MSNBC’s Hardball with Chris Matthews
“As a broadcast journalist, I know the vital importance of checking facts. As Patrick Malone teaches us in his great new book, nothing can be more important than checking the facts about your own health. It’s a matter of life and death.”

Sidney Wolfe, MD; Editor, Worstpills.org; Director, Health Research Group at Public Citizen
“Patrick Malone has compiled a remarkably well-researched set of you-cannot-afford-not-to steps to take, aided by a series of life- saving checklists of questions patients need to ask, that can make the difference between getting excellent medical care or becoming a victim of impaired health, or even death, from much worse care. Doctors and other health professionals make mistakes too often to justify a false sense of security. This important book teaches patients and their families how to catch them before they cause injury or death.”

Sorrel King, The Josie King Foundation
“Patrick Malone has written a book that really could save a life. With his moving real life stories and his brilliant advice this book is a must-read for anyone who cares about their health and well-being.”

Joan Claybrook, former President of Public Citizen
“This highly practical book guides you through the essential steps for maintaining your health and avoiding medical mistakes. An invaluable resource!”

Nancy Conrad, Founder and Chairman of the Conrad Foundation
“Patrick Malone has what Pete Conrad would call ‘The Right Stuff.’ We owe him a debt of gratitude for focusing a beam of light on saving lives.”

Library Journal
“Verdict: A thorough and up-to-date addition to patient-empowerment literature; recommended for readers interested in health, consumer, and legal issues.”

Living Without, January 2010
“[O]ne of the most important books you’ll read this year.”

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780738213040
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press
  • Publication date: 7/7/2009
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Patrick Malone is one of the leading attorneys in the United States working on behalf of seriously injured people in lawsuits against hospitals, doctors, drug manufacturers, government agencies, and insurance companies. Malone is a graduate of Yale Law School. He is a fellow of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers. He lives near Washington, DC.

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Table of Contents

1 This Book Could Save Your Life 1

2 Right Now: Get Your Records and Read Them 13

3 Talking to Your Doctor: Put It in Writing 29

4 When the Diagnosis Is in Doubt 45

5 Your Best Ally: A Top Primary-Care Doctor 55

6 Steering Clear of Dangerous Doctors 65

7 Drugs: A Dose of Reality About the Prescription Drug Industry and How You Can Safely Use Medicines 71

8 "Should I Be Tested?" Why Understanding the Numbers Is Crucial 85

9 The Second Opinion: Always Your First Choice 97

10 When You Need Surgery: Avoiding Dr. Not-So-Good and Finding Dr. Right 119

11 Making a List and Checking It Twice: The Key to Safe Surgery 143

12 Your Personal Advocate, in the Hospital and Out 155

13 The Scandal of Infections in Hospitals and Other Health-Care Facilities, and What You Can Do 169

14 Looking for the Best Hospital: A Frustrating Journey with Some Hope 187

15 Living with Chronic Disease: Advice from Survivors 203

16 Auditing Your Care so You Live Longer 219

17 Celebrating the Heroes and Champions of Patient Safety and Quality Care 231

Epilogue: Dealing With Medical Injury 243

Acknowledgments 255

Resources and Further Reading 257

Appendix A Twenty-eight Things That Should Never Happen in a Health-Care Facility 261

Appendix B High-Risk Situations in Biopsy Diagnosis of Cancer 265

Appendix C Fifteen Steps You Can Take to Reduce Your Risk of a Hospital Infection 267

Notes 271

Index 283

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 11, 2009

    Everyone should read this and pay attention to what is said

    Very helpful for someone starting out with health problems but can be useful to everyone. It is not an easy project to do but with persistence can be done and will definitely be helpful to most at some point in their life, unfortunately. But with the help of this book, you can keep on top of your own healthcare and in these times, you need to be.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 4, 2009

    This book could TRULY save someone's life. I found it very instructive in steps that guide a person in choosing a doctor and a hospital.

    This book is a step-by-step, easy read that will help people take charge of their health care and well-being. There are so many bad things that can happen in hospitals or any facet of health care. It taught me how to be pro-active in my own health care.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 2, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 31, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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