The prominent Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami has averted a termination of its Medicare privileges that was to have taken effect last Friday.
Last month the 1,320-bed hospital filed a plan of correction with HCFA to resolve allegations that it violated emergency-care laws, according to HCFA officials.
In a letter dated Nov. 8 and obtained by MODERN HEALTHCARE late last week, HCFA cited Jackson Memorial for emergency room violations "so serious that they constitute an immediate threat to the health and safety of any individual who comes to the emergency department." The letter informed Jackson Memorial of its "failure to provide an appropriate medical screening examination, failure to ensure appropriate posting of signs and failure to maintain a central log" but did not give specifics of the infractions.
HCFA said the hospital violated the 1986 Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act.
"We've submitted a plan of corrective action, and we're cooperating and trying to address the issues that were brought up in the complaint," Jackson Memorial spokeswoman Conchita Ruiz-Topinka said.
The HCFA letter told hospital President Ira Clark that the agency planned to terminate the facility's participation in Medicare on Dec. 1.
That termination had not taken effect as of late last week, according to HCFA spokeswoman Joyce Lang.
On Nov. 20, HCFA's regional office in Atlanta received Jackson Memorial's plan of correction, which the agency is reviewing, Lang said.
A follow-up survey will determine the degree to which Jackson Memorial has corrected the problems that were identified in surveys the Florida State Survey Agency conducted at the hospital on Oct. 22, 1999, and on Feb. 4. Lang could not give a date on which the follow-up assessments would be conducted.
"Most facilities are able to correct the problems and do what it takes not to lose Medicare privileges," Lang said. "That's what we hope for with this facility."