Hospitals May Get Accredited Even With Poor, Unsafe Care
•September 20, 2017•
By Trudy Lieberman
Rural Health News Service
Earlier this year an Illinois woman sent an email telling me of the poor care her husband received at a large Chicago hospital. After six weeks of fighting for his life, he died.
“I wish you could see his records and all the infections and surgeries he had,” she told me. “I’ve been wanting to do something about the care he got and just didn’t know who to go to.”
I return to this topic from time to time because everyone is vulnerable to hospital mistakes. Most people think of hospitals as safe, loving places that advertise their miracle cures on TV and build new wings to house the latest technology. How can things go wrong? But they do, and readers of this column have been eager to share their experiences.
Increasingly, it’s becoming clear there are few places patients and their families can turn for help in avoiding bad care and equally important there’s almost no guidance from state or the federal regulators. When news outlets try to write about unsafe hospitals, they run into a “veil of secrecy that protects the industry” as one reporter in Michigan put it.
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