Intended for healthcare professionals

News Roundup [abridged Versions Appear In The Paper Journal]

US Congress scrutinises hospitals owned by doctors after patient's death

BMJ 2006; 332 doi: (Published 23 February 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;332:442
  1. DC Nellie Bristol
  1. Washington

    The death of an 88 year old woman after an incident in a hospital in Oregon when no doctor was on the premises has renewed scrutiny of specialty hospitals in the United States owned by doctors.

    The hospitals have been controversial and are subject to a congressionally imposed moratorium on federal payments for new facilities. The moratorium was extended by six months in a bill signed into law earlier this month by President Bush.

    A Congressional committee said that the patient, Helen Wilson, was injected with the painkiller hydromorphone after back surgery at Physicians' Hospital, Portland, and went into cardiac arrest. The nursing staff called the emergency number, 911, to get help when she did not respond …

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