CMIO, August 25, 2011
Threatened with cutoff from Medicare reimbursements due to numerous safety violations, Parkland Hospital in Dallas has been working hard to heal its own wounds. Its clinical engineering department has played a crucial role in the effort. In an interview with Healthcare Technology Management, the department's director, Tom Collins, encouraged others to learn from the "intense experience" his team is living through as Parkland's compliance deadline approaches. Thirteen surveyors from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services arrived unannounced July 11 to inspect Parkland institution for eight days, and found "significant deficiencies" in infection control, nursing services, medical records and other areas. On Aug. 9, they notified Parkland that it is in "immediate jeopardy" of losing Medicare funding if it fails to address the problems to CMS' satisfaction prior to Sept. 2.