Beaumont Health System in Royal Oak, Mich., which operates the state's largest hospital, is attempting another merger less than a year after a previous failed deal. Beaumont and two other southeastern Michigan health systems have signed a letter of intent to create a $3.8 billion organization that will bring their eight hospitals under one umbrella. The proposal calls for Beaumont, Botsford Health Care in Farmington Hills and Oakwood Healthcare in Dearborn to combine their balance sheets and operations under a single leadership structure. The proposal comes less than a year after 1,070-bed Beaumont called off its merger with 10-hospital Henry Ford Health System in Detroit.
The American Hospital Association is pushing the Food and Drug Administration to be more aggressive in getting manufacturers of saline and other IV fluids to increase production to alleviate shortages. “The current shortages of IV fluid are unacceptable and must be resolved quickly to prevent a negative impact on patient care,” the AHA wrote in a letter to FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg. Hospitals are managing the shortfall by using smaller IV bags, switching patients to appropriate alternatives when possible and prioritizing patients based on clinical factors.
The number of annual medical device recalls nearly doubled between fiscal 2003 and 2012, according to a report Friday from the Food and Drug Administration. The agency attributed the increases to enhanced interaction with device manufacturers and device-safety initiatives from the FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health. Recalls associated with radiology devices such as linear accelerators and CT scans were most frequently reported, with more than 250 recalls reported in 2012. Cardiovascular devices, like defibrillators, had the second-highest number of recalls that year, more than 150, the report found. Between 2004 and 2012, approximately 10% of recalls came from products that had received FDA marketing authorization within the previous year.