L.A. County Supervisors Call for More Vigorous Patient Safety Measures
On Tuesday, the Los Angeles County board of supervisors called for improvements in patient safety at the county's health care facilities after reviewing a study that found that payouts for malpractice cases settled between 2005 and 2007 increased from more than $8 million to more than $12 million, the Los Angeles Times reports.
However, the study -- conducted by the independent consulting firm Abaris Group -- found that the number of malpractice cases filed against county hospitals and clinics fell from 354 in 2002 to 107 in 2009.
The supervisors gave the county's CEO and health services officials two months to generate a plan to address the issue.
The plan likely will include a database to track and report patient safety measures and a new public website where individuals could access the data.
County Supervisor Gloria Molina said she wants the board to have access to peer review records to ensure that it can hold physicians accountable for risk management.
John Schunhoff, interim director of health services, said that providing access to peer review material currently is being discussed (Hennessy-Fiske, Los Angeles Times, 8/18).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.