Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Problems Still Plague Illinois VA Hospital

Report: Problems Still Plague Illinois VA Hospital
by David Schaper

November 3, 2009
A new report from the inspector general in the Department of Veterans Affairs finds that the VA Medical Center in Marion, Ill., continues to be plagued by quality management and patient care problems some two years after a suspicious spike in the number of post-surgical patient deaths there.

A 2008 investigation found that at least nine patients died because of surgical mistakes and poor post-surgical care at the VA hospital in Marion, which is in southern Illinois. That report made recommendations to improve conditions at the facility.

The new report finds poor quality management oversight, inconsistencies in the way patient deaths are reported and continuing problems with ensuring patient safety — including the discovery that surgeons were performing procedures they were not authorized to handle.

Sen. Richard Durbin (D-IL) calls the findings "appalling."
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