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The Right Exam, The Right Way, The Right Radiation Dose

Jean Rexford, along with Rosemary Gibson, Stephen Smith,  John Santa and other supporters of national  patient safety efforts,  are contributors to an article just published in the March, 2014

The Right Exam, The Right Way, The Right Radiation Dose

The March, 2014 issue of the features an article on the overexposure of ionizing radiation to our pediatric population.  This problem has urgency in that the findings are uncontroversial and patients cannot wait for changes to passively diffuse through the system.  Through the engagement of patients, public organizations, and medical professionals in this movement, the contributors to this commentary seek to bring about that accreditation of all American hospitals and advanced diagnostic imaging facilities require these 3 practices:  The Right Exam, The Right Way, The Right Radiation Dose.

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Nurses in medical error get “re-education” | Amanda Cuda | Updated 10:49 pm, Friday, June 20, 2014   The five nurses linked to misuse of insulin pens at Derby’s Griffin Hospital will not be terminated or suspended, a hospital spokesman said. In May, hospital officials announced that pieces of a small number of insulin pens, used primarily to treat diabetes, had been used on more than one patient, leading to possible contamination.  Read more

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More Than 750 Hospitals Face Medicare Crackdown On Patient Injuries

By Jordan Rau  |  KHN Staff Writer  |  Jun 22, 2014

“The sanctions, estimated to total $330 million over a year, kick in at a time when most infections measured in hospitals are on the decline, but still too common. In 2012, one out of every eight patients nationally suffered a potentially avoidable complication during a hospital stay, the government estimates. Even infections that are waning are not decreasing fast enough to meet targets set by the government. Meanwhile new strains of antibiotic-resistant bacteria are making infections much harder to cure.”  Read more

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Kindness is Top Factor in Quality Health Care

Dignity Health, Chandler Regional Medical Center  11/13/2013  -  Dignity Health Survey Finds Majority of Americans Rate Kindness as Top Factor in Quality Health Care Patients willing to pay more and travel further for kinder treatment; Philadelphia receives top grade as kindest city for health care.

Dignity Health, one of the five largest health systems in the U.S.,  announced the findings of a nation-wide survey on the power of humankindness in health care and the perception of kindness in our society. Chandler Regional, Mercy Gilbert and St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Centers, are all part of the Dignity Health system. Read more

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Even Small Medical Advances Can Mean Big Jumps in Bills

NY Times |  By   Catherine Hayley is saving up for an important purchase: an updated version of the tiny digital pump at her waist that delivers lifesaving insulin under her skin.

Such devices, which tailor insulin dosing more precisely to the body’s needs, have transformed the lives of people with Type 1 diabetes like Ms. Hayley. But as diabetics live longer, healthier lives and worries fade about dreaded complications like heart attacks, kidney failure, amputations and blindness, they have been replaced by another preoccupation: soaring treatment costs.  Read more

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Double Dip: Doctors Paid to Advise, Promote Drug Companies That Fund Their Research

by Charles Ornstein and Ryann Grochowski Jones   ProPublica,  March 25, 2014, 12 a.m.  This story was co-published with The Boston Globe.  Research has been seen as less objectionable than other forms of interactions with drug companies, but 10 percent of researchers have multiple ties among the nine companies ProPublica analyzed. That raises questions about doctors’ impartiality.  A ProPublica analysis shows that more than 1,300 practitioners nationwide received both research money and speaking or consulting fees from the same drug maker in 2012. All told, they received more than $90 million in research grants — plus nearly $13 million for speaking engagements and another $4 million for consulting.  Read more

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Patient Safety Week 2014 – CTCPS highlights Antibiotics and their Overuse

It is Patient Safety Week, and we would like to highlight a medical concern that we are actively working on:  Infections and the overuse of antibiotics.

According to the CDC, “every day, about 1 in every 20 hospitalized patients has an infection caused by receiving medical care.  In 2010, 31.3% of patients who acquired a healthcare associated infections were readmitted within 30 days for an infection or complication.”

According to a recent announcement by Tom Frieden at the CDC, there is enormous variability in the rate at which antibiotics are prescribed from one hospital to the next – as much as three-fold!  This leads to the conclusion that even a small reduction in the amount of overprescribing will have a significant impact in reducing the number of infections, super-infections and C. difficile.  Shortly after the announcement, the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America noted that routine overuse of antibiotics puts patients in harm’s way.

At CTCPS, we are working to bring about changes in the way that antibiotics are prescribed, following these findings, so that patients will not leave the hospital with more problems than they entered with.

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How Can So Many Bright People Not See What I See?

Connecticut Health Foundation  |   February 4, 2014  |  Today’s guest post was written by Jean Rexford, Executive Director of the CT Center for Patient Safety and former Connecticut Health Foundation (CT Health) board member.    How can so many bright people not see what I see?  Years ago, a PBS special featured how different animals and birds saw the world through their unique set of eyes. Eagles, chameleons, houseflies have a unique lens that allow them to see what they need to so that might survive in a complex world.  I think of this often as I sit at multiple tables, in Connecticut and on national committees.  Why don’t the other people at the table know what I know?  Read more

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How to be a good visitor at a nursing home

With flu season upon us, we need to remind ourselves of the following suggestions found in this APIC poster on how to be a good visitor at a nursing home.  But, as you will see, the suggestions can apply to hospitals and rehabilitation facilities also – anywhere where someone with a compromised immune system might be.


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Not all FDA-approved drugs get same level of testing

Liz Szabo, USA TODAY12:21 p.m. EST January 22, 2014  |  Patients might assume that all approved drugs are created equal.  Yet new research finds that there can be big differences in the amount of testing that drugs and medical devices go through before being approved or given to patients, according to a series of articles in the Journal of the American Medical Association.  Many heart devices, for example, have been approved through a Food and Drug Administration process that assumes newer models are safe and effective based on the approval of earlier versions, a study shows.  Read more

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