You may have heard that most Americans pass away when they’re in a hospital, with some studies putting it as high as 60%. This could be a bit concerning because, while it is clear that people who arrive at the hospital are going to have serious health issues to contend with, you hope that most of them get the medical care that they need. If such a high percentage of people pass away in medical facilities, does that mean that they are getting substandard care or that doctors are making mistakes that lead to some of these deaths?
However, a better question to ask is if 60% of all people really pass away in the hospital? Where do these statistics come from?
Removing elder care facilities
One thing to note is that it’s best to remove long-term care facilities or elder care facilities from these statistics. These include nursing homes or hospice situations.
If you do that, you will find that just slightly over 35% of people have passed away in hospitals in recent years. There has been a significant change over the decades, as well, with some studies claiming that this percentage was as high as 48% back in the year 2000.
As the percentage of people dying in hospitals decreased, there was also an increase in people passing away in long-term care facilities or at home. By breaking things down this way, you remove instances in which someone was simply in a medical care facility because it was clearly the end of their life, and there was nothing more doctors could do.
Even so, with one out of three people dying in the hospital, it’s clear that medical mistakes sometimes play a role. If you’ve lost a loved one, be sure you know what options you have.