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L'Orthodontie Française

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Is human behavior the leading cause of complications in medical practice? Volume 87, issue 1, 88e réunion scientifique de la S.F.O.D.F., Marseille, 13–14 mai 2016

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* Auteur pour correspondance : docteur.renouard@gmail.com

Medical errors and the resulting complications are most often analyzed from a purely technical viewpoint. The impact of human behavior is very seldom raised among the major causes of severe undesirable events (SUE) in the medical field. When human responsibility is advanced, the thrust is always negative and critical, i.e. the "culprit" did not comply with the rules. However, in other risk-related human activities, such as aeronautics or the nuclear energy sector, the influence of human behavior in triggering SUEs has been examined and is now acknowledged to be one of the main causes of complications and problems. Specific protocols have been devised to reduce the number of mistakes made and to eliminate repercussions when errors inevitably occur. This novel approach has considerably reduced the accident rate in this type of industry. The aim of this article is to show that the same approach can be adopted in medicine and that taking human factors into account when analyzing medical practices can lead to significant improvements in safety and security.