One central component of the Obama administration's Affordable Care Act focuses on Medicare cost savings, with new law now mandating that hospitals across the country with particularly high patient readmission rates will be financially penalized as motivation for them to perform better.
A new variable might soon be routinely thrown into the mix in a medical malpractice determination regarding failure to treat infection or negligent treatment of infection or a serious disease, namely this: How closely did the doctor or relevant staff member read the list of ingredients for a dispensed drug or treatment?
The argument made by government attorneys recently in a medical malpractice lawsuit brought against the Veterans Administration alleging negligent treatment of infection apparently struck the judge as being patently unpersuasive and clearly unsupported by striking evidence to the contrary.
Health authorities in every state know that failure to get a good handle on hospital-acquired infections -- knowing what they are and at what locations they are occurring -- renders it all the more difficult to treat infection. Lack of knowledge translates into poor planning and readiness should an infection spread sudden and widely beyond a particular hospital, and certain infections are, candidly, deadly.
When it comes to hospital-acquired infections, it's just a parade of sobering statistics.
"Hospitals are dirty."
Nursing homes vary in the standard of care they provide to their residents, but one area where substandard performance is quite often seen is in facilities' efforts to control infection.
Here's something that would probably rank high in the discomfort rankings for most people: asking a doctor in a clinical setting to wash his or her hands.
Yesterday an Erie County jury awarded a man and his wife over $3.5 million in a case of medical malpractice.
According to the Las Vegas Sun, the Nevada State Board of Health is divided as to whether they should inform the public when patients contract lethal "superbugs" from specific Nevada hospitals. Some on the board opt for transparency, believing that revealing the problems will force officials to address them. And others oppose this patient-centered view.