Twelve California hospitals have been fined a total of $650,000 by the state for violations that caused or were likely to cause serious injury or death to patients.
Penalties ranged from $25,000 to $75,000 per hospital. Fines were issued for not following proper procedures for surgeries, fall prevention and safe medication distribution, among other violations. For instance, four hospitals were fined for medication errors and four fined for
retained foreign objects after surgery. Hospitals have 10 days to appeal the penalties.
Sharp Memorial Hospital in San Diego was fined $25,000. Hospitals fined $50,000 each were: AHMC Anaheim Regional Medical Center in Anaheim; Contra Costa Regional Medical Center in Martinez; Dominican Hospital in Santa Cruz; Emanuel Medical Center in Turlock; Kaiser Foundation Hospital in San Francisco; Mills-Peninsula Medical Center in Burlingame; Promise Hospital in East Los Angeles; and Scripps Memorial Hospital in Encinitas.
Three hospitals were fined $75,000 each: Palomar Medical Center in Escondido; Pomerado Hospital in Poway; and Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla.
The California Department of Public Health has issued a total of 185 penalties for these hospital patient-safety violations, and collected $4.2 million to date.
“We want hospitals to be successful” in their efforts to reduce hospital acquired infections and medical errors, and improve quality, said Pam Dickfoss, acting deputy director of the Center for Health Care Quality at the California Department of Public Health, on a call with reporters.