Flimsy Sanity: Medicare Will Not Pay for Hospital Mistakes

Flimsy Sanity

In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule. - Friedrich Nietzsche

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Medicare Will Not Pay for Hospital Mistakes

This is long overdue.

Hospital acquired infections kill nearly 100,000 Americans a year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), with 2 million patients needing treatment that costs over 25 billion dollars a year.

Consumer groups say the changes will give hospitals a strong incentive to prevent such mistakes and thereby increase patients safety from infections and procedural errors.

According to the Consumers Union, at the moment, more than 60 per cent of the total national bill for treating hospital acquired infections is met by Medicare. And many of these infections could be prevented if hospitals followed simple infection control procedures such as making sure hospital staff washed their hands between patients.

The conditions that will no longer be covered by Medicare include mediastinitis after coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery, bed sores, air embolism, falls, leaving objects inside the patient during sugery, vascular catheter-associated infections and certain catheter-associated urinary tract infections.

I am betting the AMA is going to fight this.


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