CA fines nine hospitals for putting patients at risk

California has slapped nine hospitals with $25,000 fines for putting patients at imminent risk of injury or death, marking the first time the state has fined hospitals under a new law going into effect Jan. 1. The fines, while relatively modest, set the hospital industry on more equal footing with nursing homes and health plans, which were already subject to state fines. However, hospitals still face much lower fines than nursing homes, which can be hit with $100,000 penalties.

Two fines were assessed against Martin Luther King Jr.-Harbor Hospital, which was cited in two incidents where critically-ill patients failed to get the care they needed. This included one now-famous incident in which a woman died in pain on its lobby floor without receiving medical attention. King-Harbor's hospital facilities are closed, but it still runs urgent care and outpatient clinics.

Other fined hospitals included Enloe Medical Center, Hanford Community Medical Center, Saint Agnes Medical Center, Universal Health Services, Garden Grove Hospital and Medical Center, Kaiser Foundation Hospital Santa Clara, Glendale Memorial Hospital and Feather River Hospital.

To learn more about the fines:
- read this Los Angeles Times piece

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