Federal health officials cited Martin Luther King/Drew Medical Center, Los Angeles, for poor oversight and several serious shortfalls in patient care following a surprise inspection of the teaching hospital. Among other problems, inspectors said nurses at the 249-bed county hospital showed a serious lack of attention to patients and made repeated errors in patient records, while doctors failed to correct known problems. In recent months, an accrediting group shut down the hospital's resident training programs for surgeons and radiologists and recommended closing its neonatology training program. The latest inspection was triggered by a state inquiry into the deaths of two King/Drew heart patients, who died after changes in their vital signs went undetected. The CMS will issue a formal report on the review as early as next month. If uncorrected, the violations could lead to the loss of federal funding. -- by Laura B. Benko
L.A. hospital cited for major patient-care problems
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