Reprinted from REPORT ON MEDICARE COMPLIANCE, the nation's leading source of news and strategic information on Medicare compliance, Stark and other big-dollar issues of concern to health care compliance officers.
One in seven hospitalized Medicare patients experienced an adverse event that was serious enough to prolong hospitalization, cause permanent bodily harm, require life-sustaining intervention, or result in their death, according to Ruth Ann Dorrill, deputy regional inspector general for the Office of Evaluation and Inspections. Speaking in a recent OIG podcast, Dorrill said that on a national scale, this means that in just one month, an estimated 134,000 Medicare patients experienced an adverse event, and 5,000 of those died. Dorrill added that OIG found that hospitals could have prevented 44% of the events. Looking ahead, Dorrill said that OIG will begin a study that will look at events in nursing homes to find out how often harm occurs, whether it is preventable by nursing home staff and what the cost is to Medicare. To listen to the podcast, visit http://go.usa.gov/fXh.
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