DC transplant centers face federal scrutiny

About three dozen transplant centers, including three in the DC area, are under review by the federal government because they've done too few operations in recent years, according to an article in today's Washington Post. Hospitals gain prestige from having a transplant program in place, and multiple organ transplant programs even more so. But the volume of procedures performed at three area centers--Washington Hospital Center, Inova Fairfax Hospital and Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center--has fallen far below the level regulators consider adequate to keep up surgical readiness and staff skills, the Post reports. In some instances, some of the three dozen targeted hospitals aren't maintaining good patient survival rates, either.

In response, CMS is planning to demand corrections from facilities across the U.S. in the near future. In some cases CMS may pull certifications, which would yank these facilities' ability to collect Medicare and Medicaid funding for the programs, forcing at least some to close up shop.

For more information on the transplant investigation:
- read this Washington Post article

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