OIG Report: Patient Dumping

Posted on June 3, 2011



The Office of the Inspector General has been doing very good work lately releasing damning data about the care patients are receiving in this nation’s hospitals. Today they released settlements in cases of Patient Dumping which is immoral and illegal. The full report is here. Hospitals cited in this latest data release for 2010 are listed below, as are the outcomes for most of the patients:

North Fulton Hospital (North Fulton), Georgia was cited after a woman 30 weeks pregnant (and sent by her physician) did not receive treatment.

Mobile Infirmary (MI), Alabama, refused a transfer for a patient who needed specialized care provided at their facility for a GI bleed. Hours later, the request was granted but it was too late for the patient, who died en route.

Houston Northwest Medical Center (HNMC), Texas, failed to provide screening or stabilizing treatment to a pregnant women. Outcome unknown.

Port St. Lucie Hospital (PSLH), Florida, refused tranfer of a patient who they erroneously thought was uninsured – two days in a row.

Providence Hospital, Alabama, refused an appropriate transfer request for specialized care. The patient died.

University of Chicago Medical Center (UCMC), was cited for failing to see a patient who arrived at their ED via ambulance. Instead of being seen he was wheeled into the waiting area. Hours later when the family finally convinced the triage nurse to look at their father he was dead. He had been dead so long he had rigor mortis.

Olive View UCLA Medical Center (Olive View), California, was cited for failing to see or treat a 33 man who came to the ER with chest pains. After waiting three hours he left to find care elsewhere, but collapsed in the parking lot and died.

People in the United States of America have a right to expect they will be helped when they go to an emergency room, particularly in cases like those cited here, which were real emergencies. Every one of these people should be walking around right now, going to work, spending time with their families, living their life.

Remember 1 in every 3 people admitted to a hospital for any reason is harmed or killed by the care they receive. Most of these poor souls never even made it to the admissions desk; they were culled from the herd by hospital gatekeepers. And that’s just wrong.