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'We're the ones who are in there. Our lives are entrusted to them'

Las Vegas Sun, August 12, 2010

Nevada State Sen. Shirley Breeden understands the patient suffering caused by hospital-acquired infections. While she was in Carson City last year championing a bill to require stricter reporting of such cases, her father was battling a Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, infection he contracted in a Las Vegas hospital. The bill passed, but Breeden is disappointed it won’t lead to the transparency needed to make hospitals’ reports meaningful for the public. When Breeden, a Henderson Democrat, met with lobbyists in March 2009 to discuss Senate Bill 319, they told her they would block any legislation that allowed infections to be identified by individual facilities, she said. To get lobbyists for physicians and hospitals to support reporting by hospitals, she had to promise the information would not be made public. Friday, the State Board of Health is slated to adopt those regulations for the new law.