Medicare cuts payments to 721 hospitals with high medical errors
Published on January 12, 2015
Last month, hospitals across the nation saw the toughest crackdown yet on medical errors. The federal government is cutting payments to 721 hospitals for having high rates of infections including bed sores, urinary tract infections and other patient injuries.
According to stltoday.com, Medicare will lower payments by 1 percent over the fiscal year for one out of every seven hospitals in the nation. The health law mandates that Medicare may reduce payments for 25 percent of hospitals that Medicare assessed as having the highest rates of hospital-acquired conditions, also known as HACs. This could include bed sores, blood clots, infections from catheters, and other complications that are considered avoidable. The penalties are estimated to total $373 million.
These penalties come as the hospital industry shows success in reducing avoidable errors. A recent federal report shows that the frequency of mistakes dropped by 17 percent between 2010 and 2013. However, even with the reduction, one in eight hospital admissions included a patient injury in 2013 – so there’s still a lot of work to be done.
Research shows that there are simple steps hospitals can take to reduce the amount of avoidable errors every year. Some of those things include better hand hygiene, entering physician orders in the computer rather than on paper, create checklists to follow during surgeries, and provide staff with education and training in error-reduction techniques.
The annual death toll due to medical mistakes is at least 65,000 to 200,000, according to hospital records. But records may obscure the truth, and new research has shown the figures to be more accurately between 220,000 and 440,009. By implementing better procedures in hospitals and holding hospitals and staff accountable for their actions, medical errors can be reduced and lives can be saved.
Let us tell your story
we care, and we can help. Contact us 480-991-7677 or fill out the form below
The personal injury attorneys in Phoenix, Arizona, at Knapp & Roberts have the compassion and trial lawyer skills to tell your story to a jury. We will get to know you and your family so that we can help the jury understand what has happened to you and your family and how it has changed your lives. Obtain the compensation necessary for the injuries and losses you have suffered.