What 5 things does Consumer Reports say patients should ask before EVERY test, treatment, or procedure?


Last night I got to see a presentation at the Mercer Island Public Library in Washington state. The presentation was jointly put on by an energetic group of patient safety advocates from Consumer Union, which is the “policy and mobilization arm” of Consumer Reports, and the Washington Advocates for Patient Safety.  The attendees were just regular people who responded to an email invitation from Consumer Reports because they wanted to know more about protecting themselves from preventable mistakes in the hospital context.

The best takeaway was the list of five questions we should all ask our doctors every time they propose to do something.  Those questions are above.  But there was a lot more. For example, we got a tutorial in the Consumer Reports Hospital Ratings, and learned six things we should know about every drug we take.  (I’ll put those up in a later post.)  The presentation was fantastic, and I recommend anyone who gets the chance to go to one do so.

Peter Mullenix