Factors affecting the recurrence of medical errors in hospitals and the preventive strategies: A scoping review

Negar Aghighi, Aidin Aryankhesal, Pouran Raeissi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
11 Downloads (Pure)


Due to the high value of human life, the occurrence of even one error that leads to death or complications is of great consequence and requires serious attention. Although significant efforts have been made to ensure patient safety, serious medical errors continue to exist. This study aimed to identify the factors associated with the recurrence of medical errors and strategies to prevent them through a scoping review. Data were gathered through a scoping review of PubMed, Embase, Scopus, and Cochrane Library databases during August 2020. Articles related to factors influencing the recurrence of errors despite the available information, as well as articles related to measures taken worldwide to prevent them, were included in study. Overall, 32 articles were selected out of the 3422 primary papers. Two main categories of factors were identified as influential in error recurrence: human factors (fatigue, stress, inadequate knowledge) and environmental and organizational factors (ineffective management, distractions, poor teamwork). The six effective strategies for preventing error recurrence included the use of electronic systems, attention to human behaviors, proper workplace management, workplace culture, training, and teamwork. It was concluded that using a combination of methods related to health management, psychology, behavioral sciences and electronic systems can be effective in preventing the recurrence of errors.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7
JournalJournal of Medical Ethics and History of Medicine
Publication statusPublished - 25 Oct 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Hospitals
  • Medical errors
  • Medical mistakes
  • Patient safety

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