Federal Inspectors Find Serious Deficiencies

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    On April 12, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released its final report on Northern Michigan Hospital (NMH) in Petoskey, Michigan, which found that the hospital, whose nurses have been on strike since November 2002, was not in compliance with three conditions of participation for the Medicare program: Patient rights, physical environment and infection control. Consequently, Northern Michigan Hospital may lose its participation in the lucrative Medicare program.

    Full Story: http://biz.yahoo.com/prnews/040416/dcf029_1.html
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    Quote from brian
    On April 12, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released its final report on Northern Michigan Hospital (NMH) in Petoskey, Michigan, which found that the hospital, whose nurses have been on strike since November 2002, was not in compliance with three conditions of participation for the Medicare program: Patient rights, physical environment and infection control. Consequently, Northern Michigan Hospital may lose its participation in the lucrative Medicare program.

    Full Story: http://biz.yahoo.com/prnews/040416/dcf029_1.html

    It is always interesting to find a situation in which you are directly involved reported in mass media and then requoted to promote an agenda. Imagine my lack of surprise to find inaccuracy clipped from an article and posted here. Imagine how I continued to be not surprised when I glanced through the article and found the source for the story was the Teamster union themselves. Let's start with the title of the article.... they were not Federal inspectors... they were STATE inspectors.

    As a registered nurse at Northern Michigan Hospital who has actually taken a moment to review the CMS report let me assure you that in the final analysis the deficiencies were anything but serious dangers to the community that we serve.

    Regarding patient rights deficiencies, the surveyors cited an inconsistent method of notifying patients that their complaints had been addressed. Annoying perhaps, but not dangerous.

    The physical environment findings amount to needing better lighting at an obscure hospital exit. There was a bulb blown out or something of that nature. There were a couple of minor building repair issues which is not totally unexpected of a building being used. Things break occasionally and require repair. End of story.

    Infection control was not even listed in the final report as problematic. So this is just blantantly inaccurate information designed to scare the public. Shame on you for pertetuating this nonsense.

    We have actually been surveyed on several occasions. Quite a rigorous undertaking and honestly a waste of my taxpayer dollars. When questioned about the nature of the complaints received against the hospital the surveyors were only aware of 2 complaints, a far cry from the multiple complaints that are alluded to in the linked article.

    Survey after survey actually has confirmed that we are delivering excellent care at Northern Michigan Hospital. No nursing deficiencies were discovered in spite of the ongoing nursing strike. Those of us who remain and those who have come to augment our number are fortunate to work in a friendly, progressive environment where nursing's contribution to patient care is valued and appreciated.
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    I found it interesting that Representative Bart Stupak, Michigan 1st district had several reports about Northern Michigan Hopital on his website, including the CMS report. http://www.house.gov/stupak/northern...anhospital.htm
    Must be because Rep Stupak has received constituent concerns about what's occuring there.

    After reviewing the CMS report, several items are just minor:
    *577 hospital charts not completed 30 days after patient discharge
    *coffee maker in pharmacy dispensing area
    BUT:
    *facility failed to have properly exectuted surigical consent forms on chart in 2 of 4 samples
    *1 of 2 patient samples did not have postanesthesia evaulation in chart within 48 hours as required
    *facility failed to impliment consistent process for prompt resolution of patient griviences in 2 of 6 cases and Patient Representive unable to explain the practice....

    Your facility has been under close obervation from reviewing Rep Stupack website. To have these type of problems found when staff aware of need for heightened practice standards is a CMS concern....just not a union ploy.
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Apr 24, '04
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    <QUOTE>BUT:
    *facility failed to have properly exectuted surigical consent forms on chart in 2 of 4 samples
    *1 of 2 patient samples did not have postanesthesia evaulation in chart within 48 hours as required
    *facility failed to impliment consistent process for prompt resolution of patient griviences in 2 of 6 cases and Patient Representive unable to explain the practice....

    Your facility has been under close obervation from reviewing Rep Stupack website. To have these type of problems found when staff aware of need for heightened practice standards is a CMS concern....just not a union ploy.[/QUOTE]


    Correct again. There were a couple of dates changed on surgical consent forms and no one initialed the date change. Not so serious as implied.

    The patient grievance reference was mentioned in my earlier post and I will clarify for you further here. A formal follow-up letter was not sent to the complainant at the completion of the grievance process. Again, a possible annoyance, but less than a clear and present danger.

    The anesthesia department was surprised that any chart was found without the necessary post op evaluation. This could have been one out of several thousand for all we know at this point.

    However, thank you for assisting me in making my point that none of these deficiencies were nursing issues. None of these issues adversely affect direct patient care.

    In addition, the patient complaints that allegedly prompted this intense scrutiny were not substantiated when the analysis was complete.


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