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A promise of "transparency, truth and accuracy"?

Video cameras document Huntington convenience store purchases, people's movements inside shopping malls and in parking lots, police car travels, traffic in busy intersections and the activities of people gathering in large public spaces such as parks and stadiums.

Some argue that we need to add video cameras to improve safety in life-and-death situations in hospital operating rooms as well. Proponents argue that cameras in ORs would help doctors and patients spot surgical errors and take steps to prevent repetition of the mistakes.

Unsurprisingly, perhaps, the medical industry objects to the proposal, arguing that putting cameras in operating rooms would compromise patient confidentiality, but more importantly, lead to medical malpractice claims.

The movement to put cameras in ORs has its genesis in the story of a Florida woman who died during breast-enhancement surgery after being given too much of the anesthetic propofol. A news story earlier this year on her 2003 death said the doctor waited minutes after the woman's heart stopped beating to begin resuscitation measures.

The doctor had an office manager, not a health care professional, check his patient's pulse. The doctor later lost his medical license, but his 38-year-old patient had lost her life.

Now the woman's brother is leading a fight in her memory to compel all hospitals to install cameras to document all surgeries. He says the installations will bring "transparency, truth and accuracy" to accounts of surgeries gone wrong. We don't know how the story of his battle against the health care industry will end, but we do know that far too many people die or suffer terrible injuries because of negligence in operating rooms.

An experienced West Virginia medical malpractice attorney fights for justice and for full compensation for your damages.

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