12 California Hospitals Receive Fines for Major Patient Safety Lapses
Last week, the California Department of Public Health announced that 12 state hospitals have received $25,000 fines for serious patient safety violations, the Torrance Daily Breeze reports (Torrance Daily Breeze, 9/3).
Under a 2007 state law, hospitals must notify state regulators of all significant patient injuries. State officials can then assess $25,000 penalties for each violation.
Since the law took effect, the department has issued 98 penalties against 67 acute care facilities.
Kathleen Billingsley, deputy director of the department's Center for Health Care Quality, said the state has received payment for 63 penalties, while 24 remain in an appeals process.
Billingsley said the department has collected $1.8 million in fines so far. She said officials plan to use the funds for quality improvement projects.
Last year, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) signed legislation that will double hospital fines to $50,000 for patient safety violations that occur this year. The latest round of fines pertains to incidents that occurred in 2007 and 2008.
HealthLeaders Media lists each of the 12 hospitals that received fines and describes some of the violations (Clark, HealthLeaders Media, 9/4).
Links and headlines to other coverage of California's hospital fines appear below.
- "Enloe Fined $25,000 by State Department of Health" (Mitchell, Chico Enterprise-Record, 9/4).
- "Six Southern California Hospitals Fined for Serious Violations" (Yoshino, Los Angeles Times, 9/4).
- "CHOC, Hoag, South Coast Medical Fined for Patient Safety" (Perkes, Orange County Register, 9/3).
- "Two Inland Hospitals Fined After State Investigations" (Burgin/Hines, Riverside Press-Enterprise, 9/3).
- "State Fines Mercy San Juan Hospital" (Tong, Sacramento Bee, 9/3).
- "State Fines Mercy San Juan Medical Center" (Robertson, Sacramento Business Journal, 9/3).
- "Arrowhead Regional Medical Center Fined for Leaving Sponge in Surgical Patient" (Steinberg, San Bernardino County Sun, 9/3).
- "San Jose Convalescent Hospital Fined $80,000 After Death of Woman, 83" (Fernandez, San Jose Mercury News, 9/3).
- "Medical Mix-Up Has Kaiser in Trouble" (Lowe, Vallejo Times Herald, 9/4).