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PSNet: Patient Safety Network
Journal Article
Commentary

Hastened death due to disease burden and distress that has not received timely, quality palliative care is a medical error.

Gallagher R, Passmore MJ, Baldwin C. Med Hypotheses. 2020;142:109727.

The authors of this article suggest that offering palliative care services earlier should be considered a patient safety issue. They highlight three cases in which patients in Canada requested medical assistance in dying (MAiD). The patients in two of the cases were never offered palliative care services, and this could be considered a medical error – had they been offered palliative care services, they may have changed their mind about MAiD, as did the patient in the third case study.