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Medical Errors

Wrong surgery, wrong medication, serious bedsores… Unsafe practices and poor quality care kill more than 440,000 patients each year and waste billions of dollars every year. What information do you have about the safety of your hospital? What protections do you have if the hospital makes a mistake with you?


  • A Tragic Reminder How Fragile Life Is
  • There are no conflicts of interest for a pilot
  • Six local hospitals fined for preventable infections (San Diego)

Infections/ Superbugs

Hospital acquired infections are a leading cause of death in the U.S. Consumers Union supports public disclosure of infection rates so that you can choose the safest hospital and hospitals will have an incentive to improve. We are currently working on antibiotic resistant superbugs and call for states to report cases to the CDC and hospitals report outbreaks to the public.


  • C. diff
  • MRSA


  • Consumers Union Petitions California to Protect Patients From Hospital Infections
  • CDPH data indicating California acute care hospitals without state licensure inspections for the more than five-year period between January 1, 2011 and June 18, 2016.
  • Consumers Union Safe Patient Project Analysis CDPH Data 2013 – 2015 includes all hospitals with significantly high infection rates in each infection category, arranged by county

Hip and Knee Replacement

More and more people are getting hip and knee replacements to feel better, play longer. And if the hip or knee implant fails, it likely will require revision surgery, which is both painful and costly. Implants don’t come with a warranty. Consumers Union is calling on the top manufacturers of hip and knee implants to begin offering warranties for their products and take responsibility for the associated costs if they fail due to a product defective.


  • Drugs


  • Consumer Reports Releases Investigative Report on Drug Pricing
  • FDA faulted for failure to track safety issues with drugs already on market
  • A Cautionary Tale: Dangers of Antibiotic Overuse

Doctor Accountability

When physicians provide poor quality care, their patients are typically the last to know. Some physician backgrounds may be available in your state, but can you tell which ones have the most complaints, malpractice claims or disciplinary actions? Knowing the background information on your doctor could save your life. Consumers Union Safe Patient Project is petitioning the California Medical Board to require doctors who have been put on probation by the medical board inform their patients about their status. Follow our campaign on Twitter by looking up the hashtag #DocsOnProbation.


  • CU letter urges ACGME to maintain limits on medical resident work hours
  • Letter to CA Gov. Brown asking for veto of SB.117
  • California doctors on probation as of 4-26-16