The death toll from “healthcare screw-ups” adds up to at least 500,000 Americans annually. That is the equivalent of more than 3 jumbo jets crashing every day of the year. Because these individuals are dying at home, in hospitals, or in nursing homes, no one is counting the bodies. The medical profession seems largely immune to the consequences of its errors. If our calculations are correct, it means that medical mistakes are the major leading cause of death in the United States, right after heart disease (616,067) and cancer (562,875) and way ahead of strokes, the next big killer (135,952).