An analysis released in 1999 by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) concluded that 44,000 to 98,000 people die annually due to errors in inpatient hospital treatment. Only 1.53 percent of patients who were harmed by medical treatment filed malpractice claims. The reality is that this number is not decreasing but turning out to be much worse. According to study published in the Journal of Patient Safety, up to 440,000 lives a year are claimed by preventable errors made by medical professionals. That's more than four times the number asserted in the 1999 IOM analysis, and more than any other cause of death in the US besides cancer and heart disease. Wrongful death due to medical error exceeds car accident fatalities in America by more than a factor of 13.
Source: Art Adams