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The pros and cons of undergoing surgery at a teaching hospital

When going in for surgery, one of the options you may have is to go to a teaching hospital. This is just what is sounds like: A hospital that has an agreement or connection with a nearby university, so students who are working to become professionals can get hands-on train. So, what are the pros and cons of the situation?

The Downsides

-- Students with very little experience may be involved closely in the process.-- The operation could take longer with the focus on teaching.-- Mistakes could be made by inexperienced doctors.-- You can't look at long track records for doctors who haven't been working for long.

The Upsides

-- Some studies indicate that surgery is safer at a teaching hospital because doctors are careful to do things the right way so as to instruct the students.-- Students who ask questions can keep doctors accountable.-- Teaching hospitals typically use the newest techniques and updated equipment.-- Doctors are less likely to grow complacent and careless.

As you can see, there are risks at a teaching hospital due to a lack of experience, but some people warn that experience can actually increase the risk because doctors do not take their time and pay less attention to what they're doing. In that sense, a mistake may be less likely if there are students assisting and paying close attention to every single step.

No matter which hospital you choose, there is a chance you could be injured due to errors or mistakes. It's important to know your options under New Jersey law if this happens.

Source: US News and World Report, "Is Surgery Safer at a Teaching Hospital?," Hannah Webster, accessed May 05, 2016

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Breslin and Breslin, PA, Donald A. Caminiti, Esq., was one of six law firms selected by the Attorney General of the State of New Jersey to act as special counsel to represent it in its lawsuit against the tobacco industry to recover Medicaid and other health related costs incurred by the state resulting from tobacco related illnesses.