Eliminating Harm from
Diagnostic Error

The Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine (SIDM) is working to create a world where no patients are harmed by diagnostic error.

Understanding Diagnostic Error

Medscape, in partnership with SIDM, developed a learning module for individuals interested in improving diagnostic accuracy.


Jessica Barnett was 12 when she started fainting. Her local hospital referred her to a neurologist at a leading children’s hospitals, where she was diagnosed with epilepsy. But the prescribed medicine didn’t help.

DxQI Seed Grant Program

Engaging healthcare organizations in efforts to identify, develop, and test interventions aimed at improving diagnostic quality and reducing harm from diagnostic error.

Testing Oversight

After finding a small lump on her breast, Sandra Kaus completed a mammogram and was told if she did not hear back, all was well. One year later, Sandra faced a devastating delayed diagnosis.

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Improving Diagnostic Safety

Over 50 leading healthcare organizations have joined forces to reduce harm and ensure better health outcomes for patients.

Webinar: Reducing Harm by Getting Patients the Right Diagnosis at the Right Time

Diagnostic errors are the most common, catastrophic and costly of all medical errors—resulting in thousands of patients suffering serious harm every year.

Watch this SIDM-sponsored Modern Healthcare webinar to learn how to understand diagnostic error, when and where misdiagnoses are most likely to take place, how to track areas for improvement in diagnostic quality, and best practices that systems can employ to improve the diagnostic process.


Patients and family members have a significant opportunity to contribute to diagnostic accuracy and timeliness by actively participating in the diagnostic process. But often, they don't know the questions to ask, the information to offer, or the steps to take to improve diagnosis.

Clinical Teams

Every member of the clinical team has a role to play in ensuring that diagnoses are accurate, timely and communicated to the patient. SIDM offers resources for clinical team members to improve cognitive skills and work within their health systems to improve the diagnostic process.

Medical Educators

Improving diagnosis requires continued investment in medical education, leveraging trainees, practitioners, and educators to address gaps in the system and focus on the teams that contribute to accurate and timely diagnostics. SIDM's resources for medical educators examine clinical reasoning and system factors that underlie diagnostic error, and offer tools and strategies to to bring diagnostic quality and safety into the medical education curriculum.


Whether you're an established researcher or just joining the diagnostic error research community, SIDM offers a variety of resources to help advance research efforts in the field. Explore existing literature, engage with your peers, and join the conversation as we work to foster the growth of the research community.


Despite the fact that diagnostic error likely accounts for more patient harm than all other medical errors combined, federal investment in research to improve diagnosis amounts to about $7 million per year, or just .02% of the total $35 billion federal health research budget. Learn how you can support efforts to expand funding for research.

In the News

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Upcoming #TeachDx Twitter Chat

Join us on Sunday, January 26, 2020 at 8:00 pm CST for our next #TeachDx Twitter chat in collaboration with #MedStudentChat on Learning Clinical Reasoning in Medical School.

Doctor hands is holding X-Ray film for examining on table desktop with personal equipment., Healthcare and occupation concept, Vector, Illustration. (Doctor hands is holding X-Ray film for examining on table desktop with personal equipment., Healthcar

Medical testing’s dirty little secret and how you can protect yourself

Though the vast majority of tests are conducted correctly, and reported quickly and accurately to the healthcare professional and the patient, understanding how the testing process can and does go wrong can give you an opportunity to protect yourself.


Feeling Dismissed and Ignored by Your Doctor? Do this.

Trust is an essential part of healthcare. When we feel poorly, we visit our doctor with our hopes high, trusting that she will help us heal. But what if we feel like our trust isn’t returned? What if our symptoms are dismissed or our story considered unlikely?

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Bipartisan Legislation Increasing Research Funding to Improve Diagnosis Introduced in U.S. House

Bipartisan legislation, Improving Diagnosis in Medicine Act of 2019, was introduced by U.S. House Assistant Speaker Ben Ray Luján (D-NM) and Rep. Gus Bilirakis (R-FL) on November 13.

Support Our Mission

Only through your support can SIDM create a world where no patients are harmed by diagnostic error.

Join the Online Community

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start conversations, discover resources, and network with your peers.