Far too often patients enter a hospital because of one ailment and then contract an infection after they are admitted because of conditions at the hospital. These hospital-acquired infections pose potentially deadly problems for many-especially the most vulnerable patients. We have often posted on the need for hospitals to provide data to prospective patients on their rates of infection. In that way, these facilities will be held accountable for rates that are above the average and that should be improved.
The Seattle Times reports that hospitals in that state have taken the positive step of providing post surgery infection data to patients. A new state law requires medical facilities in the state to post that data online at a hospital specific level. The data allows close, easy comparison of hospitals, and officials in that state noted that some facilities stuck out immediately for their high numbers. For example, the overall infection rate average is .76 per 100 procedures, but one facility had a staggering 12.99 per 100 rate.
There may be explanations for certain figures, especially related to hospital size and unique care provided. The hospitals will always have an opportunity to explain certain figures that they believe to be misleading. However, that step can never be reached if the figures are never presented to patients in a meaningful way.
In Illinois, our hospitals post a “report card” that includes some hospital generated infections, but not many. As it now stands only bloodstream infection rates are accessible to patients in these reports. More information is planned to be released, however.
Our Chicago malpractice lawyers at Levin & Perconti consistently believe that basic accountability and improvement in medical care begins with a fair assessment of the mistakes that are made and the steps needed to account for the errors. Patients deserve honest information about the facility and caregivers to which they are entrusting their lives. If you or someone you has suffered at the hands of negligent hospitals, please contact our Chicago malpractice attorneys to learn more about your legal options.
See Our Related Blog Posts: