How Safe Are Hospitals That Train Doctors? Many are Downright Scary

Here at Medical Miscreants we help save lives by exposing the ugly realities of U.S. healthcare that typically go under-reported. And one of the absolutely ugliest realities is this:

A stunning number of American hospitals routinely expose citizens to lethal germs for no good reason. And a recent study underscores the seriousness of this medical scourge. It reveals the results of a 5-year evaluation of 2,000 hospitals – specifically, how well do they prevent Central  Line infections?

The analysis by Consumer Reports reveals an almost jaw-dropping fact: 31 teaching hospitals made their worst performance list. These findings were surprisingly bad, according to Doctor Doris Peter, Consumer Reports Health Ratings Center Director. She reports that very little progress at teaching hospitals has occurred over the last 5 years, even though the hospitals say they have what they need to improve in infection control. She called it a major concern, because teaching hospitals are responsible for training the next generation of doctors.

Deadly Infections Can be Almost Totally Eliminated

dr-wash-hands

Not a lot of rocket science in hospital germ control

Central Line Infections not only cost more than $45,000 to treat per patient, but in any given year, they kill 1 out of every 4 patients who contract them. In fact, hospital-acquired infections are one of the primary causes of death in the United States.

These infections are nearly 100% preventable, when an evidence-based protocol checklist is followed, according to Doctor Peter Pronovost, Director of the Armstrong Institute. Although these infections account for only a small number of overall hospital infections nationwide, he says the high death rate is all the reason hospitals should need to aggressively go after the deadly situation.

The report profiled 2 hospitals – Shore Medical Center in New Jersey and St. Luke’s-Roosevelt in New York – which handled central line infections successfully.

The Worst Scoring Teaching Hospitals (in alphabetic order)

  • Atlanta Medical Center, Georgia
  • Banner-University Medical Center, Tucson
  • Brooklyn Hospital Center, New York
  • Community Regional Medical Center, Fresno
  • Cooper University Health Care, New Jersey
  • Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Lebanon New Hampshire
  • Emory University Hospital, Atlanta
  • Eskenazi Health, Indianapolis
  • George Washington University Hospital, District of Columbia
  • Grady Memorial Hospital, Atlanta
  • Holy Cross Hospital, Maryland
  • Howard University Hospital, District of Columbia
  • Hurley Medical Center, Flint, Michigan
  • Indiana University Health, Indianapolis
  • Interim LSU Public Hospital, New Orleans
  • Long Beach Memorial, California
  • MacNeal Hospital, Berwyn Illinois
  • Maine Medical Center, Portland Maine
  • Maricopa Integrated Health, Phoenix
  • Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha
  • Palmetto Health Richland, South Carolina
  • Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles
  • SUNY Downstate University Hospital, New York          
  • Truman Medical Center-Hospital Hill, Kansas City
  • Tulane Medical Center, New Orleans
  • UC San Diego Health, California
  • UF Health Jacksonville, Florida
  • University Hospital Newark, New Jersey
  • University Medical Center of El Paso, Texas
  • University of Iowa Hospitals, Iowa

A word to the wise: Not all hospitals are safe.

Here’s how to check yours:

http://www.consumerreports.org/health/doctors-hospitals/hospital-ratings/ratings/search-results.htm?state=CA

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