Hospitals fined $775K for patient safety violations in California

Nine California hospitals face fines for violations that caused, or could have caused, serious injury or death to patients, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) announced. The group fined Los Angeles County/Harbor-UCLA Medical Center in Torrance $50,000 for a patient who died after suffering a cut artery during a knee replacement, the hospital's fifth violation. St. Jude Medical Center in Fullerton failed to prevent a patient fall that resulted in death--the hospital's sixth administrative penalty that resulted in a $100,000 fine. Other violations ranged from leaving a soft device inside a patient to the incorrect removal of a jugular catheter from a patient. About 25 percent of all administrative penalties are for a retained foreign object after surgery, 22 percent relate to patient care issues and about 20 percent are for medication errors, according to the CDPH. All cited hospitals must provide a plan of correction to prevent future incidents. Announcement

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