Home / Tag Archives: Patients Gone Wild (page 2)

Tag Archives: Patients Gone Wild

Healthcare Update — 05-29-2013

See more Healthcare Updates on my other blog at EP Monthly.com Cool graphic from Diederich Healthcare regarding 2013 Medical Malpractice Payout Analysis. Among the stats: Medical malpractice payouts have steadily declined since 2003. Five states represent nearly half of all payouts: New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, California, and … you guessed it … FLORIDA. Nine of the top ten states in per-capita payouts were in the New England region. Failure to diagnose was the most common allegation and caused the largest percentage of payouts. But don’t forget, everyone, doctors do waaaay too much diagnostic testing. Schools require a doctor’s note for sunscreen? I’m betting that if the schools had to pay for the doctor’s visit, that requirement would vanish. First entry for this week’s Patient’s Gone Wild … Pennsylvania patient grabs emergency department physician and throws her to the floor, injuring her legs and hands. Then head-butts a police officer and urinates in the back of the squad car on his way to the hoosegow. Second story on the incident is here. Study from Pediatrics shows that in Peru, where antibiotics are available without a prescription: 85% of caregivers respected a doctor’s advice not to use antibiotics for diarrhea or a common cold in their children. What conclusions can be drawn from this study? Hmmmmm. I could make a lot of conclusions, but one thing to think about: See how a collaborative relationship is established between doctors and patients when medicine is deregulated? Let patients buy all the medications over the counter that they want. When they don’t get better, then they’ll seek out doctors’ advice rather than viewing them as someone they have to pay in order to get a prescription for inappropriate antibiotics. Well … Grandma’s ashes are still on the mantle. Massachusetts audit discovers that millions of dollars are being paid to dead beneficiaries. 178 people were claiming dead people as dependents. Another lesson in the difference between insurance and health care. Employers being courted by insurance brokers offering barebones plans that barely meet Obamacare requirements but that do not cover surgery, x-rays, prenatal care, or hospitalizations. This way everyone gets “insurance,” employers avoid the Obamacare fines, and employees get stuck with inadequate health care, but everyone can cheer at the news stories describing how many people now have health care “insurance”. Woo hoo! Saw this coming a mile away. Wonder if Uncle Sam will make additional changes in the law in order to force employers to provide additional coverage. Speaking about Obamacare, a majority of Americans say that their health care situation will be worse under the Unaffordable Insurance Act. That number includes 85% of all Republicans and 51% of all independents. Only 24% of Democrats believe that Obamacare will make things worse for them. 56% of those polled want to go back to the old health care system. Let me guess … FoxNews smear campaign against the Demorats. In Taiwan emergency department, a well-known actor punched an emergency department physician in the back of the head for delaying placing the actor’s mother on a ventilator. The Tiawanese Society of Emergency Medicine reported that 80% of emergency personnel have been verbally or physically abused and that 30% have been attacked. Patient satisfaction in Morocco … at 66% favorable, the results are about 2 standard deviations worse than in United States emergency departments. But they’re still way better than that schmuck Press Ganey CEO Patrick Ryan. From the “If You Measure It, Someone Will Study It” Department: Obese patients are 52% more likely to doctor shop and 85% more likely to use the emergency department than are ...

Read More »

Healthcare Update — 05-15-2013

Also see more Healthcare Updates on my other blog at EP Monthly.com Pain pills make you impotent. Well, the study doesn’t quite say that but the headline sure catches your attention, doesn’t it? The study did note a 45% increased likelihood of using testosterone replacement or medications for erectile dysfunction when patients were taking long-term opioids. You think YOU’ve got it bad? In Pakistan, four children share the same ICU bed and machines such as MRIs have been out of order for more than 3 years – forcing patients to go to private hospitals and pay out of pocket to have the tests done. The Medical Marijuana Associates would have a conniption just thinking about this happening in the US, but the government that provides everything to you has the power to take everything away from you. Don’t worry. Nothing like this would ever happen in this country. On the other hand, according to the article, the tests cost about 20,000 Rupees – about $200 US Dollars – which is a fraction of the cost for the same tests in the US. Another bamblance stolen – this time the driver was still inside. Tennessee’s John Shanks jumped in the driver’s seat of an ambulance in Erlanger Hospital’s parking lot and drove away while the driver was in the back of the ambulance cleaning it. Driver tried to subdue thief who when jumped out of the ambulance and ran away in a serpentine pattern. He was later caught and charged with multiple crimes. Patients gone wild episode of the week. Intoxicated male “causing trouble” in Newfoundland ED. Police called to scene and patient now faces charges of causing a disturbance and assaulting a police officer. Remember the story about the brawl in the Georgia ED waiting room a few weeks ago? Now police have released pictures from surveillance video that shows the alleged perps and are looking for information identifying them. Identified so far include Quantavious Cortez Thomas, Altravious Antwan Thomas, Montravious Monque Gibson, and Cedrick Octavious Marshall. Tragic story. Twelve year old girl dies after taking grandmother’s used Fentanyl patch out of the garbage and putting it on her leg – possibly to help with a stomach ache. Richard Epstein eloquently explains how the Affordable Care Act is unraveling before our eyes. Insurance isn’t worth much if no one can afford it. How much will individual health insurance premiums increase under Obamacare? Estimates from 17 of the country’s largest health insurance providers expect 100-400% increases. In other words, 90% of individuals will be dropping their health insurance policies. Businesses will see a 50-100% increase in their premiums. Instead of calling it the UnAffordable Care Act, maybe I’ll start calling it the UnAffordable Insurance Act. Indiana man goes to hospital and shoots himself in hospital emergency department after shooting his former boyfriend at boyfriend’s place of employment. More “unnecessary” spending in medicine. Urologists at Henry Ford Hospital allege that emergency department treatment for UTIs alone cost $4 billion per year in “unnecessary” health care costs. I need to start publishing retrospective studies about wasteful procedures in other specialties. Irish emergency department so crowded and busy that it has to pull an ambulance up to the front door to act as an extra resuscitation room for a patient. To be fair, there were five patients all needing resuscitation at the same time. I actually think that the doctors were pretty resourceful in coming up with the idea. South Carolina parents sue hospital for performing corrective surgery on young child with ambiguous genitalia, stating that the doctors picked the wrong sex. Doctors created ...

Read More »

Healthcare Update – 05-07-2013

Also see more Healthcare Updates on my other blog at EP Monthly.com Here’s a headline bound to catch your attention. Psychiatrists spend a million hours a year attempting to get approval from insurance companies to admit suicidal or mentally ill patients. Link to the study in Annals of Emergency Medicine is here. Study on Medicaid use in Oregon shows that patients who have Medicaid have no better health outcomes than people who don’t, but they do utilize “a lot more health care.” In addition, Medicaid “nearly eliminated catastrophic out-of-pocket medical expenditures.” Is Obama just dangerously misinformed about ObamaCare? Or is he willfully misleading the country? Article picks apart statements that the president is making about the UnAffordable Care Act. The rules about the UnAffordable Care Act keep evolving. Wellness programs that require workers to meet certain health standards to get lower insurance premiums cannot be included as part of minimum coverage requirements that employers must meet. Unions lobbied against wellness programs alleging that they would discriminate against unhealthy workers. South Carolina legislature flips ObamaCare the bird. State House passed a bill that makes it a criminal act to enforce or attempt to enforce the law in South Carolina. Governor Nikki Haley calls the health care exchanges “nothing more than a way to make the state do the federal government’s bidding in spending massive amounts of taxpayer dollars on insurance subsidies that we can’t afford.” Ouch. More allegations of “false advertising” relating to advertised emergency department wait times. This case is at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Brighton, Massachusetts. The hospital spokesperson says that the advertised time is a “door to room” time which is a “standard measure” for hospital emergency departments. Not true. False advertising and consumer fraud claims aren’t subject to the medical malpractice caps that are present in many states. Will be interesting to see where this is headed. Man’s runny nose that lasted for several years wasn’t an allergy — it was a CSF leak. And don’t go running to the ED asking for MRIs of your brain because your nose is running. This was an exceptional case. Senator Chuck Schumer wants to increase federal restrictions on hydrocodone prescriptions because they are “gateway drugs” and because “our doctors are prescribing too much of this.” Hey Chucky … how about we put federal restrictions on how many dumb laws you can try to pass? After all, those laws are a gateway to … oh I don’t know … even dumber laws? Patients gone wild. Florida patient attacks doctor after being told to stop cursing and to stop calling the staff names. Arrested and faces felony charges. More patients gone wild. New Jersey man arrested for disorderly conduct and criminal mischief in St. Luke’s Hospital emergency department. No mention of what he did to deserve such charges. JAMA study shows that children with migraine headaches were six times more likely to have experienced colic as an infant. Meanwhile, a study published earlier this year in Pediatrics showed that colicky infants often had significantly different intestinal flora than their non-colicky counterparts. Proteobacteria was increased in colicky babies while bifidobacteria and lactobacilli were decreased. More articles on doctor shopping and drug seeking patients. This Ohio article provides a couple of chilling statistics from a study done Toledo’s St. Lukes Hospital: Ohio overdose deaths totaled more than traffic fatalities by almost a third. And of the 1,544 Ohio citizens who died of drug overdoses in 2010, prescription opioids were listed on 45% of the death certificates. Defense attorney praises doctor for refusing to settle a medical malpractice case when sued for a patient ...

Read More »

Healthcare Update — 05-01-2013

Doing a mini-update for now. More to come. Woman walks into hospital, goes to random patient rooms and tries to pry open machines infusing pain medication into IV lines. When that doesn’t work, she cuts the IV lines and steals the medications directly from the IV lines. Listen, lady. Hospitals are probably one of the more video camera-laden places in our society. Walking through a hospital will virtually guarantee that hospital security will have a picture of you … which they will then post on the news wire. Like this. Easier method: Go to Nurse K’s hospital emergency department, ask for Dr. FeelGood, and complain of bad back pain. Taking patients gone wild to a new level. Australian nurse has part of her breast bitten off during altercation with patient. Concern grows over the “rising tide of violence in the emergency department.” Well, if I’m going back to go to the Greybar Motel after my layover in the emergency department, I may as well try the ol’ bathroom escape trick. Tennessee inmate escapes from emergency department bathroom after getting a bathroom break. Caught shortly afterwards and is now charged with felony escape in addition to his other felonies. Pennsylvania’s Dr. Robert Childs bashes emergency department in letter of resignation to hospital. Criticizes emergency physicians for transferring a 7 month old with a burn to the hand to a burn center – where the patient was admitted for three days. States that he could have treated the infant’s burn by applying cream and bandages which would have cost about $150 and would have saved the family from traveling back and forth to the burn center. Those mean emergency physicians don’t trust doctors in our area so they ship them out of town. Oh, and they call and wake him up in bed at night, too. Bwaaaaaahhh. Hey, Doc … the criteria for transfer of burn patients (.pdf) include both burns involving the hands and burns in hospitals without personnel qualified for the care of children. When burns to the infant’s hand that you treat for $150 scar down and cause loss of function in the fingers, I’m sure the child and the family will be so pleased that you decided to save them money and drive time. You need to go read a book or two and pipe down with your silly letter writing. Then you can apologize to the doctors you bashed. From a reader … Here’s one for your long-suffering “bambulance driver” readers… “According to the incident report, Ferguson said she didn’t have a car and this was the only way she had to get around and Medicaid paid for it anyway. It was part of her benefits. “And all of those ambulance trips taken by Ferguson? “Each one costs $425, plus mileage. “Officials say what Medicaid doesn’t pay, taxpayers will have foot the rest of the bill, more than $400,000.” N.B.  She’s 51 and on Medicare, has been doing this for seven years (since she was 44), and thinks using ambulances for basic transport should have been part of the “benefits” she was “entitled to”.  We’re stuffed. Until providers and police prosecute thieves like this, I agree. We are stuffed. If this lady made hundreds of false police reports to get a ride to the police station or stole hundreds of FBI vehicles to take a drive downtown, she’d be in the Greybar Motel quicker than she could say “abdominal pain.” And think about the access to ambulance services that people with true emergencies lost while paramedics were playing Driving Miss Daisy with this woman. From another reader ...

Read More »

Healthcare Update — 04-23-2013

Also see more Healthcare Updates on my other blog at EP Monthly.com New York family wins $130 million in medical malpractice lawsuit stemming from obstetrical negligence case where patient was born with cerebral palsy. The back story to the verdict is even more wild. The plaintiffs rejected an $8 million settlement offer, then lost the case at trial. An appellate court reversed the verdict and the case was tried a second time, resulting in a hung jury. The third trial resulted in the $130 million verdict. Georgia hospital gives up fight to erect a freestanding emergency department. State denies request because the area “already has plenty of emergency services and that the proposals failed to demonstrate the need for new services”. Ever wonder why the state only controls hospital construction? Why doesn’t the state say that areas already have plenty of strip malls or Burger Kings or banks and deny building permits to those businesses? Hospital in Nevada accused of “patient dumping” by giving psychiatric patients one-way bus tickets to California. The article doesn’t say whether the patients are prematurely discharged from the Nevada hospital before being sent to California, but if not, California officials are certainly stretching the definition of “patient dumping”. Ohio man found intoxicated and cursing in Kettering Medical Center ED. Taken outside by police and wants bus ride back to VA. Good thing this wasn’t California or the police would have been accused of patient dumping for bringing him there. Couldn’t resist clicking on the link after reading the headline. Seven Things Teenagers Can Do To Stay Out of the Emergency Room. Ultimately the advice, such as avoiding guns, avoiding drugs, and regularly exercising, is common sense … but then again, if some teenagers used common sense they wouldn’t end up in the emergency department, so the advice is worth repeating. Patients gone wild. Perhaps more appropriately patient families gone wild. Stabbing victim brought to ED in Albany, GA, then victim’s family attacks stabber. A doctor and several nurses were pushed in the melee by a friend of the victim, apparently for “taking their time” when the perpetrator, one Quantavious Thomas, wasn’t sure whether or not his friend was still alive. “Ever hurt anyone?” It’s like a story line from that canceled Fox TV series Mob Doctor. Cleveland Clinic emergency nurse tries to hire an emergency room patient to kill someone over a property dispute. Now the nurse will be wearing striped scrub suit in the Greybar Motel. Does a charge of $2500 for a five mile ambulance ride and $1900 for a “60 second” emergency department visit demonstrate a need for universal health care? I don’t think so. Changing the payor won’t necessarily decrease the charges. Another thing I found interesting with the article was the number of commenters who weren’t as concerned with the charges as they were with making sure that someone else was paying for them. Eventually that “someone else” trickles back to all of us. Expanding liability for medical malpractice. A cancer patient was moved to a long-term care hospital where the patient was made a DNR without the patient or his wife agreeing to DNR status, then was started on “comfort care” measures and allegedly died from an overdose of pain killers. An autopsy listed the patient’s death as an overdose and listed the manner as an “accident.” If plantiffs can show that the hospital’s actions were “willful, reckless, or a felony,” then New Jersey’s medical malpractice caps on non-economic damages don’t apply. I’m torn on this case. On one hand, do we want the Liverpool Pathway to be instituted in ...

Read More »