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PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2011 12:29 pm 
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Robotic surgery speeds patient recovery

Robotic cancer surgery is being introduced to the public hospital system for the first time in Victoria.

The Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne has been trialing the key-hole surgery technology for the past six months.

Associate Professor Declan Murphy says the robot is most commonly used on localised prostate cancer and it speeds patient recovery.

"Normally, following open surgery for prostate cancer, patients are in hospital for six or seven days, typically, and it can take six to 12 weeks to get back to normal activities," he said.

"We have discharged over 90 per cent of our patients on the day following surgery. So clearly patients get out of hospital much quicker."

He says the hospital is also looking to expand the robotic program beyond prostate cancer.

"Already at Peter Mac we've been using the robot to operate on kidney cancer patients and patients with cancer of the rectum," he said.

"In the next six to 12 months, we'll also be expanding it to other specialities, such as gynaecology, abdominal surgery, head and neck surgery and thoracic surgery."

http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2011 ... ion=justin


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 24, 2011 7:26 am 
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Hospital Infection Raises Death Risk for Bowel Patients

FRIDAY, April 22 (HealthDay News) -- Patients hospitalized for treatment of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have a six-fold increased risk of death if they become infected with Clostridium difficile bacteria, a new study finds.

IBD includes Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. When people with IBD experience severe symptoms, they often require hospitalization, note the researchers at Imperial College London and St. George's Healthcare NHS Trust in the United Kingdom.

They examined data on IBD patients hospitalized between 2002 and 2008 and found that those infected with C. difficile in the hospital were six times more likely to die in the hospital than those not infected with the bacteria. The death rate at 30 days was 25 percent for those with C. difficile and 3 percent for those who were free of the bacteria.

The researchers also found that IBD patients with C. difficile stayed in the hospital longer (a median stay of 26 days vs. five days) and were nearly twice as likely to require gastrointestinal surgery.

The study was published April 19 in the journal Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics.

C. difficile bacteria -- found in the gut in around two-thirds of children and 3 per cent of adults -- do not cause illness in healthy people. Broad-spectrum antibiotics can cause problems by eliminating harmless bacteria that usually live in the gut, permitting C. difficile to thrive and produce toxins that cause diarrhea and fever. The infection, however, is rarely lethal in people who are not already elderly or extremely ill.

"Hospitals must do everything they can to control infections such as C. difficile. We are asking for these high-risk patients to be screened for C. difficile proactively on admission to hospital so that if they are exposed, they can be diagnosed and treated more quickly," study author Dr. Sonia Saxena, School of Public Health, Imperial College London, said in a college news release.

http://health.usnews.com/health-news/di ... l-patients


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 25, 2011 8:56 am 
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Morbidly obese patients take toll on health system

MORBIDLY obese hospital patients cost taxpayers more than $4.3 million a year for supersized beds, toilets and hoists.

Melbourne's busiest hospitals spent up to $960,000 each last year on bigger and reinforced equipment to cater for 250kg-plus patients, who also take up extra staff time and ward space, which extends waiting lists.

Documents obtained by the Herald Sun show the supersized bill for equipment to cater for morbidly obese patients was at least $4,313,706 last year - but it would be much higher if the Austin, Bendigo and Mercy Hospitals released details of their purchases.

The obesity epidemic is also hurting regional Victoria, with Geelong Hospital spending more than $630,000, Ballarat Hospital $250,000 and Frankston $96,393 last year for heavy-duty equipment.

The Alfred spent more than $450,000 on hoists alone, so it could lift patients up to 300kg in and out of bed, while Western and St Vincent's hospitals had to buy heavy-duty morgue trolleys to carry the bodies of severely overweight people.

Hospitals' budgets and waiting lists suffered because of the extra time and resources spent on bigger patients while others waited, Victorian Healthcare Association chief executive Trevor Carr said.

"Often it means a four- bedroom ward may only be occupied by two people and then that means your revenue flows are compromised," Mr Carr said.

"We have been dealing with these ethical responsibility issues for a long, long time with smokers and the impact of smoking on health, and the impact of drinking on health.

"It is not something new in terms of having the questions raised about where self-responsibility and taxpayer maintenance cut in and out - this is something we are constantly dealing with."

Deakin University obesity expert Prof Boyd Swinburn said hospitals had no choice but to buy specialised equipment.

"They have a tough job to do in terms of allocating scarce resources, so they have to work out where the best bang for their buck is ... without a moral judgment about how the person ended up needing the care in the first place," Prof Swinburn said.

"The same is true for people coming through for heart disease, which is another lifestyle disorder," he added.

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/more-n ... 6044233284


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2011 3:20 pm 
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Patients who enter hospitals are at high risk of potentially deadly infections or medical mistakes

(NaturalNews) Americans may be putting their lives at risk every time they are admitted into a hospital. Hospitals are responsible for protecting and restoring our health, but they have instances of professional negligence and fatal errors.

The April 2011 issue of Health Affairs tackled the theme of the quality of care in American hospitals - with some alarming studies and statistics. Healthcare-associated infections and medical mistakes - including drug-related errors and preventable surgical complications - harm thousands of patients every year, with some mistakes proving lethal.Among the findings: One-third of all hospital admissions result in adverse effects from medical mistakes, and voluntary reporting methods used to currently track patient safety records miss up to 90 percent of serious medical errors. (1)

A 2002 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that nearly 100,000 deaths occur each year from healthcare-associated infections such as pneumonia, bloodstream infections, urinary tract infections, and surgical site infections. (2)

Other preventable errors - including accidental puncture or laceration, complications of anesthesia, and post-surgical sepsis - account for an additional 195,000 deaths annually.

New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd explains that patients and relatives are often reluctant to speak out when they witness potentially harmful practices because they may be afraid of inciting sub-standard treatment if they anger doctors or other healthcare professionals. (3) Dowd lost her own brother when he was admitted to the hospital for pneumonia and contracted four additional infections while in the ICU.

Doctors and other healthcare professionals also have poor track records of adhering to guidelines that prevent the spread of germs, including hand-washing rules. And many American doctors continue to wear neckties, despite a 2004 study found that doctors' ties could harbor contagious microbes and superbugs. (3) (http://www.naturalnews.com/025916_a...)

The British National Health Service, meanwhile, has adopted a policy that bans doctors from wearing neckties on the grounds that they could spread the superbug Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). (4) MRSA is resistant to many antibiotics and poses a 50 percent mortality rate among hospital patients. (http://www.naturalnews.com/027619_M...)

http://www.naturalnews.com/032188_hospi ... takes.html


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 30, 2011 6:49 am 
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More Aussies admitted to hospital: report

More Australians are being admitted to hospital and they're also waiting longer for elective surgery, the latest statistics show.

According to the Australian Hospital Statistics report, Australians had to wait an average 36 days in 2009/10 for planned elective surgery, two more days than the year before.

The rate of elective surgery overall has risen slightly - by 2.4 per cent or about 30 people for every 1000 each year.

The annual report by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare monitors how the country's 1,326 hospitals are operating.

It showed that admissions in 2009/10 grew to 8.5 million, up from 8.1 million the year before.

That included 5.1 million admissions in public hospitals, and 3.5 million in private ones.

But it appears Australians are increasingly going private over public, with the latter rising by an average 3.5 per cent each year, compared to five per cent for private hospital admissions.

Stays have gone down - with patients spending an average 5.9 days in hospital, down from 6.2 days the previous four years.

There were 7.4 million accident and emergency services provided in public hospitals in 2009/10 compared to 7.2 million in 2008/09.

Of that, 70 per cent were seen within the recommended time depending on their injury, while there was a 100 per cent strike rate for those needing immediate treatment.

Federal Health Minister Nicola Roxon said the statistics proved a $20 billion cash injection into the public health system was helping more patients get treated.

"For the first time ever, there has been over 600,000 elective surgery operations in the public system, thanks to Labor's funding boost," she said in a statement.

http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-na ... 1dz6q.html


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PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 9:19 am 
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Surgical Anesthesia Not All That Effective, Say Researchers

Experts in Australia have suggested that anesthesia during surgery is not that effective since a large number of patients regain consciousness at some part during the surgery, leading to long-term post-traumatic stress disorder in some patients.

Researchers led by Professors Andrew Davidson and Kate Leslie, from Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital, found that at least one in 1,000 patients had some sort of awareness during surgery while they number doubled among children with one in 500 saying that they were awake during surgery.

Professor Davidson said that the awareness differed from being vaguely aware among some patients while others were fully aware of what exactly was happening during the surgery. He went on to add that at least a quarter of the patients from the latter category suffered from some form of post-traumatic stress disorder including nightmares and depression.

“It seems to be the people that are most traumatized are the ones that are paralyzed and in pain and wide awake and unable to move and terrified about doing anything”, Professor Davidson added.

Experts in Australia have suggested that anesthesia during surgery is not that effective since a large number of patients regain consciousness at some part during the surgery, leading to long-term post-traumatic stress disorder in some patients.

Researchers led by Professors Andrew Davidson and Kate Leslie, from Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital, found that at least one in 1,000 patients had some sort of awareness during surgery while they number doubled among children with one in 500 saying that they were awake during surgery.

Professor Davidson said that the awareness differed from being vaguely aware among some patients while others were fully aware of what exactly was happening during the surgery. He went on to add that at least a quarter of the patients from the latter category suffered from some form of post-traumatic stress disorder including nightmares and depression.

“It seems to be the people that are most traumatized are the ones that are paralyzed and in pain and wide awake and unable to move and terrified about doing anything”, Professor Davidson added.

http://www.medindia.net/news/Surgical-A ... 5079-1.htm


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PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 6:42 pm 
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Hospitals Misleading Patients About Benefits of Robotic Surgery, Study Suggests

ScienceDaily (May 19, 2011) — An estimated four in 10 hospital websites in the United States publicize the use of robotic surgery, with the lion's share touting its clinical superiority despite a lack of scientific evidence that robotic surgery is any better than conventional operations, a new Johns Hopkins study finds.

The promotional materials, researchers report online in the Journal for Healthcare Quality, overestimate the benefits of surgical robots, largely ignore the risks and are strongly influenced by the product's manufacturer.

"The public regards a hospital's official website as an authoritative source of medical information in the voice of a physician," says Marty Makary, M.D., M.P.H., an associate professor of surgery at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and the study's leader. "But in this case, hospitals have outsourced patient education content to the device manufacturer, allowing industry to make claims that are unsubstantiated by the literature. It's dishonest and it's misleading."

In the last four years, Makary says, the use of robotics to perform minimally invasive gynecological, heart and prostate surgeries and other types of common procedures has grown 400 percent. Proponents say robot-assisted operations use smaller incisions, are more precise and result in less pain and shorter hospital stays -- claims the study's authors challenge as unsubstantiated. More hospitals are buying the expensive new equipment and many use aggressive advertising to lure patients who want to be treated with what they think is the latest and greatest in medical technology, Makary notes.

But Makary says there are no randomized, controlled studies showing patient benefit in robotic surgery. "New doesn't always mean better," he says, adding that robotic surgeries take more time, keep patients under anesthesia longer and are more costly.

None of that is apparent in reading hospital websites that promote its use, he says. For example he points out that 33 percent of hospital websites that make robot claims say that the device yields better cancer outcomes -- a notion he points out as misleading to a vulnerable cancer population seeking out the best care.

Makary and his colleagues analyzed 400 randomly selected websites from U.S. hospitals of 200 beds or more. Data were gathered on the presence and location of robotic surgery information on a website, the use of images or text provided by the manufacturer, and claims made about the performance of the robot.

Forty-one percent of the hospital websites reviewed described the availability and mechanics of robotic surgery, the study found. Of these, 37 percent presented the information on the homepage and 66 percent mentioned it within one click of the homepage. Manufacturer-provided materials were used on 73 percent of websites, while 33 percent directly linked to a manufacturer website.

When describing robotic surgery, the researchers found that 89 percent made a statement of clinical superiority over more conventional surgeries, the most common being less pain (85 percent), shorter recovery (86 percent), less scarring (80 percent) and less blood loss (78 percent). Thirty-two percent made a statement of improved cancer outcome. None mentioned any risks.

"This is a really scary trend," Makary says. "We're allowing industry to speak on behalf of hospitals and make unsubstantiated claims."

Makary says websites do not make clear how institutions or physicians arrived at their claims of the robot's superiority, or what kinds of comparisons are being made. "Was robotic surgery being compared to the standard of care, which is laparoscopic surgery," Makary asks, "or to 'open' surgery, which is an irrelevant comparison because robots are only used in cases when minimally invasive techniques are called for."

Makary says the use of manufacturer-provided images and text also raises serious conflict- of-interest questions. He says hospitals should police themselves in order not to misinform patients. Johns Hopkins Medicine, for example, forbids the use of industry-provided content on its websites.

"Hospitals need to be more conscientious of their role as trusted medical advisers and ensure that information provided on their websites represents the best available evidence," he says. "Otherwise, it's a violation of the public trust."

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 092040.htm


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 7:25 am 
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National accord reached on hospital performance

A NEW $118 million health authority will track and report hospital performances, including error rates, after state and federal health ministers reached a compromise on how it would operate.

In a step forward for the federal government's health reform agenda, the ministers yesterday agreed that an independent National Health Performance Authority would monitor, assess and report on the performance of hospitals and health networks, giving state governments 45 days' notice of the results before they are released to the public.

The chairman of the meeting and West Australian Health Minister, Dr Kim Hames, said state governments would be able to use the time to discuss the results with health services, check their accuracy and seek explanations, if necessary.

Advertisement: Story continues below Before yesterday's meeting in Melbourne, some states, including Victoria and Western Australia, had objected to the authority, saying it was an intrusive layer of bureaucracy that would undermine the states' role as health system managers. They were particularly concerned that performance data would be released by the authority, naming and shaming hospitals before the states could scrutinise the data and ask hospitals to explain.

The authority is expected to report on sensitive issues, including surgery and emergency department waiting times, the rate of infections and bed sores acquired in hospital and patient falls causing injuries.

Last month, Victorian Premier Ted Baillieu said the legislation drafted by the Commonwealth for the authority was ''fundamentally different'' to what Victoria agreed to at the February meeting of the Council of Australian Governments. He also said that the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare was an existing body, which with some enhancement to its functions could undertake the performance authority role.

WA Premier Colin Barnett had also expressed concern about the performance authority legislation, saying it contained ''significant flaws'' and had been drafted without consulting the states.

Federal Health Minister Nicola Roxon said she was pleased Victoria was ''back in the fold'' and conceded the Commonwealth's decision to introduce legislation for the authority before consulting with the states had caused unnecessary agitation.

''We have no hesitation about them making sure that as a systems manager they [the states and territories] get early notification of problems, they get an opportunity to be able to remediate those problems,'' she said.

Victorian Health Minister David Davis said he was pleased with the outcome, but emphasised it was an ''in principle'' agreement, with the states needing to see a final re-worked bill and framework before the authority would be created.

Mr Davis said the Commonwealth had also said that it would not have the final say on local hospital networks despite its previous request for a review of Victoria's networks within two years, with an aim to create fewer, larger networks. Mr Davis said such a move would force hospital boards to merge and lead to hospital closures.

''I think the Commonwealth has understood that the states have the role with local hospital networks,'' he said.

http://www.theage.com.au/national/natio ... 1fr3p.html


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:52 am 
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Health auditor too weak: Australian Medical Association

THE new health watchdog with the power to name and shame underperforming hospitals is too weak and must be strengthened to allow the Auditor-General to check the data the states submit, the Australian Medical Association says.

State and federal health ministers on Tuesday gave the go-ahead to the National Health Performance Authority.

The NHPA will monitor whether extra federal funding goes towards reducing elective surgery queues, improving emergency department care and cutting hospital infection rates.

The new body is a key accountability measure in Labor's $19.8 billion health reforms. However, AMA president Steve Hambleton warned yesterday that the authority's ability to do its job well would depend on the quality of the data it is given from the states.

State governments had turned the manipulation of hospital data "into an art form", Dr Hambleton said.

"They have very creative ways of coming up with virtual wards and virtual beds," he said.

"There are waiting lists for the waiting list in Queensland, and Victoria admits patients to chairs and trolleys in the corridor."

The NSW Liberal Health Minister Jillian Skinner revealed yesterday the ousted Labor government had rorted its elective surgery waiting lists by running "hidden waiting lists", which held up to 30,000 patients.

To solve this problem, the AMA wants the new watchdog to have the power to commission the Auditor-General to audit data submitted by the states.

And it wants the authority to be able to impose civil penalties on state and territory government officials who knowingly submit incorrect data.

"We cannot currently be confident that the government decisions about public hospital funding, including decision about staffing levels, capital funding, number of beds and so on, are based on accurate information," the AMA says in its submission to a Senate inquiry into the new authority.

There may, however, be jurisdictional issues if the federal Auditor-General tried to investigate state bureaucrats.

A spokesman for Health Minister Nicola Roxon said she was continuing to work with the states, territories and the private sector to ensure the data submitted to the agency were robust and reliable.

The COAG Reform Council revealed this week that waiting times for surgery had increased despite a $300 million funding boost from the federal government.

Data released by NSW yesterday for the first three months of this year show waiting times for urgent surgery have increased by two days for 50 per cent of patients, waiting times for non-urgent surgery have gone up by 10 days to 217 days while semi-urgent patients are being treated more quickly.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/nationa ... 6071995684


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2011 7:18 am 
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Hospitals 'have a right' to knock back patients

QUEENSLAND'S top health bureaucrat says public hospitals have the right to spit back GP referrals of patients for specialist care, after the Australian Medical Association claimed the practice left sick people "in the lurch".

AMA state president Gino Pecoraro said yesterday the knockback of two GP referrals by the Gold Coast Hospital -- one for a patient classed as category 1 of outpatient urgency, the other as category 2 -- was unprecedented.

Letters released by the AMA show the executive director of medical services at the Gold Coast Hospital had advised on January 14 last year that a GP's referral of a patient to see a gastroenterologist was being returned so "you could consider other options".

This was because the waiting list for the gastro clinic was "lengthy and your patient would not be seen in a reasonable timeframe". The GP was asked to consider sending the patient to a private specialist or to another public hospital.

This was despite a category 1 classification that meant the patient should have been seen within 30 days, under rules covering waiting time for outpatient hospital treatment in Queensland.

The second referral, for a category 2 patient, also with a gastric complaint, was sent back to the GP in an identically worded letter on May 13 this year by the Gold Coast Hospital.

Dr Pecoraro said the patients had been "left in the lurch" when they had a right to be put in the queue for a specialist in the public system. "They've thrown their hands up, they've given up and left these patients alone and abandoned," he said.

Gold Coast Health District chief executive Adrian Nowitzke conceded last night the letters were badly worded, but denied there was a policy to deny patients access to waiting lists for publicly-funded specialists.

"We're not rejecting referrals . . . people are more than welcome to join the queue," Dr Nowitzke said.

"We've got a choice to put people on the waiting list and leave them there or let them know they might want to consider other options."

Queensland Health acting director-general Tony O'Connell insisted no patient with a life-threatening condition was ever refused treatment.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/nationa ... 6072632575


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 11, 2011 8:43 am 
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Policy Must Examine the Complexity of Hospital Readmissions

Healthcare and government officials share the common goal of reducing hospital readmissions to improve medical care and better manage medical resources. But new regulations to back this mission must be supported by real-world experience to prevent unintended consequences to hospitals that serve the neediest communities.

Readmission regulations are meant to encourage hospitals to do more so patients do not come back to the hospital soon after discharge. Hospitals will not be reimbursed by Medicare for readmission within 30 days of discharge for patients with heart attack, heart failure, or pneumonia if the hospital's readmission rate is higher than predicted. This applies regardless of whether the patient returns to the same hospital or another hospital.

There is potential for tremendous benefit to patients and for Medicare. But the reasons for readmissions are complex and the study of how to reduce them is truly a nascent science.

We do know readmissions are costly. Medicare spends about $15 billion a year on readmissions to hospitals, according to the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, and about $12 billion of those readmissions may be preventable.

A successful nationwide campaign to end unnecessary readmissions would improve outcomes for patients as well as allow those resources to go to training, research, care innovation, expanding coverage and access to care. Not every readmission is preventable, but rates across the country and the experience of many hospitals suggest that hospitals can do better.

In fact, many hospitals are rethinking and redesigning their approach. Led by the work of researchers like Eric Coleman, MD and Mary Naylor, RN, hospitals are providing greater support for the patient during the transition from the acute care hospital to home. Nurses are coaching patients to manage their condition better. Follow-up calls to patients are helping them keep appointments and medication management programs are helping them stay on regimens. Other programs are improving coordination between primary care offices, hospitals and nursing centers.

The new regulations need amendments to prevent unintended harm to hospitals that are following these steps and others to reduce readmissions. It should start with proper risk adjustment of readmissions data.

Risk adjustment is common in hospital outcomes data. A hospital that sees heart patients who have no other co-morbidities, for example, will see different results than a hospital that treats heart patients with multiple, serious complications.

Readmission risk factors can include social isolation, financial barriers to medications and supplies, limited health literacy, limited access to outpatient and primary care providers, as well as common co-morbidities like depression. These are exactly the conditions that are most severe in communities of need. It would be an undesired and unintended consequence of the readmissions rules to cut payments to hospitals whose patients are disadvantaged, creating greater inequity.

If these factors are not incorporated into risk adjustment models, a misleading impression may occur about a hospital's readmissions. Indeed, a hospital may have a higher than average readmission rate, but still be managing readmissions well and to the benefit of patients, when compared with peer institutions caring for similar patient populations.

Regulations also should focus on conditions where evidence suggests readmissions can be reduced. These conditions include congestive heart failure and asthma, where following care guidelines and implementing post discharge care management can prevent relapses.

These reasonable changes will improve the goal of reducing hospital readmissions, allow hospitals to maximize their efforts and resources on readmissions they can control, and provide balanced measures that all hospitals can follow.

Focusing on readmissions can be a strong impetus for positive change, healthcare system redesign, and improved health status for patients. But it only works if we design our intervention and measurement approaches with careful consideration of what patients need, what is fair, and what has been proven through medical studies.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/eliot-j-l ... 75100.html


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2011 8:43 am 
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Hospital apathy ruins youth's life

Bangalore: Shabbir, 23, lies unmoving on his bed in KC General Hospital, with little hope of recovery or relief. His is a classic case of official apathy and delay -- even four years after a terrible accident left his life in ruins, the hospital authorities have not sent a memo on the medico-legal case saying they have attended on him.

This negligence has taken a toll on the life of Shabbir, who is permanently bedridden. He is back at the government hospital for a wound that has not healed, and also growing bed sores.

It was on February 5, 2007, around 9 am, that Shabbir, who was working on a school building under construction, fell from the second floor. He was rushed to KC General Hospital, where authorities termed it a medico-legal case (MLC) that required the intervention of the police, and registration of a criminal case.

Documents in possession of TOI, obtained through the Right to Information (RTI) Act, revealed that even after four years, hospital authorities have conveniently forgotten to inform Malleswaram police located next door. "We are yet to receive any MLC memo from the hospital relating to Shabbir's case," the Malleswaram police said on April 23.

Mir Saifulla, a social worker who found Shabbir in a pitiable condition at KC General Hospital, said the youth's father, Khasim, had to sell off his property in Davanagere to pay for his son's medical expenses at a specialty hospital in the city. Shabbir, a native of Davanagere, had come to the city to work for a builder constructing a school on Kanakapura Road, when the accident occurred.

Soon after he fell from the second floor, Shabbir was rushed to hospital and was diagnosed as having traumatic paraplegia. Doctors advised him to undergo surgery to decompress the lower vertebra (spinal cord). But the surgical procedures did not yield any result and his condition worsened, forcing his family to shift him to a specialty hospital where another surgery was performed. He was discharged on November 19, 2007, nearly a month of hospitalization.

"His condition is getting worse. He is not liable to get compensation because of the negligence of hospital authorities in their failure to send the MLC memo to the police station next door. The contractor of the building should have been booked under a criminal case. The hospital has committed criminal negligence in the case as well as played with his health," said Saifulla.

Khasim plans to meet medical education minister S A Ramdass. "What else can I do, but appeal to the minister so that such things do not happen to any poor youngster like my son. I am hopeful of meeting the minister, who is doing a good job of cleansing the administration of these hospitals," he said.

"My son's wound stinks and I fear that slowly maggots have started creeping around it. But my concern is beyond him -- for others who should not be left in this pathetic condition," he added.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city ... 829620.cms


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2011 9:36 am 
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'Hundreds die' despite Australians putting hands up for organ donation

Former governor-general Michael Jeffery says hundreds of Australians have died waiting for an organ while $151 million set aside by the Federal Government to improve donation rates is being squandered on bureaucracy and ineffective advertising.
Sydney transplant surgeon Deb Verran joined Major-General Jeffery in Canberra yesterday. They launched a campaign by ShareLife to fix the government program they say has lost its way.

But Transplants Australia chairman Alan Amodeo said his figures showed a 20 per cent increase in transplants per million and The Australian Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation Authority was doing a good job. ''In 2009, the starting point was 38.5 [transplants per million] in May this year it was 46.4,'' Dr Amodeo said.

''If someone dies because they aren't getting an organ that's not good enough but I truly believe we are moving in the right direction. A lot of work still needs to be done but a 20 per cent increase is significant.''

Major-General Jeffery said the original plan had been poorly implemented. In 2008 the Rudd government provided $151.1 million over four years to improve organ and tissue donation rates.

''By now we should have been achieving best practice of 90 transplant per million as against our current 40,'' Major-General Jeffery said.

Dr Verran said the focus on organ donor registration was misguided. ''NSW has three times more registered donors than Victoria but NSW had two fewer deceased donors than Victoria in 2007,'' she said.

According to ShareLife, between 2002 and 2006 an extra one million Australians registered to donate organs. Over the same period, the level of actual donations declined.

Dr Verran said there was no correlation between registered donors and donation rates and the Government should focus on conversion rates.

''This plan was not around a 10 per cent improvement. It could save [or improve the lives of] up to 1200 people each year if implemented properly,'' Dr Verran said.

For more information visit http://sharelife.org.au.

http://www.canberratimes.com.au/news/lo ... 95423.aspx


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2011 9:40 am 
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Figures show hospitals need first aid

FOUR out of 10 patients waited longer than clinically recommended to be seen at the Northern Hospital last year, new hospital figures have revealed.
But Northern Hospital was not alone. Every metropolitan hospital in the inner north – including Royal Melbourne Hospital, the Austin Hospital and St Vincent's – experienced similar growth in patient numbers, and similar problems with overcrowding, bed shortages and elective surgery.

According to the Baillieu government's first hospital report card, 61 per cent of patients at Northern were treated within recommended times between July and December last year. Of those, only 59 per cent were admitted to a bed within eight hours, well below the government target of 80 per cent. Only 63 per cent of non-admitted patients were discharged within four hours; the state government target is 80 per cent.

Northern Hospital spent 3.5 per cent of the time on hospital bypass, (the practise of diverting ambulances when the hospital was full) exceeding the state government target of 3 per cent.

Between July and December, Northern spent 180 hours on the Hospital Early Warning System, a precursor to going on bypass.

The figures also reveal patients spent a combined total of 3764 days occupying hospital beds at Northern while waiting for federally funded aged care beds, clogging up hospital wards. Many of these figures have not previously been made public.

Australasian College of Emergency Medicine Victorian chairman Dr Simon Judkins said "gridlocked" emergency departments reflected a shortage of beds elsewhere within the hospital system.

Health Minister David Davis conceded there was "patchy" performance across some hospitals, but said transparency would allow for improvements.

http://www.northernweekly.com.au/news/l ... 94165.aspx


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2011 4:23 pm 
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UK nurses banned from revealing cleavages, midriffs under strict new rules

NURSES cannot show their cleavages or midriffs under strict new rules in effect today at select taxpayer-funded National Health Service (NHS) hospitals in Britain.

Following complaints from patients, East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust issued a six-page uniform policy that bans nurses, doctors and non-clinical staff from exposing “excessive cleavage,” among other things, The (London) Daily Telegraph said.

“Staff will not dress in ways that undermine the spirit of this policy and clothing that exposes the midriff, torso or excessive cleavage, along with wearing denim, shorts, leggings and miniskirts, are not acceptable attire,” according to the guidelines.

“There had been complaints from patients about members of staff baring their midriff and problems with health and safety as some had been wearing sandals,” the Trust’s Hannah Middleton said. “There has always been a policy but it has now been toughened up.”

The policy also urges employees to be aware of their personal hygiene, making special mention of lingering cigarette smoke on their clothes and on their breath.

Moustaches and beards must be “clean and neatly trimmed”, and hair ribbons and accessories such as combs are banned under the new rules.

The Trust, which overseas 5000 staff, will carry out checks on its uniform policy and those who fail to comply will face disciplinary action.

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/breaki ... 6076458133

[comment - next they'll be banning sponge baths ;)]


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