State Cites Florida Hospital For Inadequate Infection Controls

Inspectors for the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) are saying that Halifax Health Medical Center didn’t have proper policies and procedures in place to stem a potentially deadly hospital-acquired infection.

The AHCA, which is responsible for ensuring that health providers are in compliance with federal and state regulations, was looking into a series of drug-resistant bacterial infections that occurred at Halifax from July 2010 to May 2012.

According to the Daytona Beach News-Journal, AHCA inspectors reported that there had been no “infection control oversight” at the hospital from Jan 26 to Feb. 21 of this year. They also noted that the hospital’s chief medical officer told them there had been a “lack of effective leadership with the problem since 2010.”

Halifax reported 21 cases of Acinetobactor baumannii infection in 2011 and another 17 cases this year. The drug-resistant bug can cause pneumonia and urinary tract problems and is typically associated with intensive care unit infections.

An infectious disease specialist at Brown University told the News-Journal that even one or two cases should trigger “aggressive control measures.” There were 8 reported cases at Halifax in January of 2012 alone.

A spokeswoman for Halifax disputed some of the report’s findings and said that from the hospital’s standpoint there was “no great outbreak.”

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that preventable hospital-acquired infections contribute to the deaths of nearly 100,000 people a year.

When hospital staff and administrators are diligent and follow proper procedures, hospital-acquired infections are entirely preventable. The Florida hospital negligence attorneys at Farah & Farah will see that the liable parties are held responsible if you or a loved one has been harmed by a preventable hospital-acquired infection. Call us at (800) 533-3555 for a free and discreet review of your case.