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More Deficiencies Found at Methodist Health

Margaret Dick Tocknell, for HealthLeaders Media, October 14, 2011

The new problems were discovered during a follow-up review undertaken to confirm that the facility had corrected certain immediate jeopardy problems identified during an August review of the medical center. That review identified 10 broad areas of deficiencies, involving medical screening, emergency services, handwashing, medication administration, and medical records.

In a statement e-mailed to Healthleaders Media, officials at Methodist Dallas said the 10 previous deficiencies had been "acceptably addressed" but new problems were discovered during the recent seven-day survey.

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Methodist's statement noted that the 515-bed hospital "follows national standards regarding nurse staffing and infection control protocols." It said the hospital has already taken action to correct the problems, including "instituting additional nursing education, strengthening surveillance to ensure adherence to policies and protocols, and reinforcing adherence through annual education and performance reviews."

Methodist Dallas Medical Center, which is part of the five-hospital Methodist Health System, is the second Dallas hospital in recent months to face the potential loss of its Medicare funding. Last month officials at Parkland Memorial Hospital signed an agreement with CMS that allows the hospital to retain more than $417 million in Medicare and Medicaid funding while it attempts to correct deficiencies that threatened its closure.

Margaret Dick Tocknell is a reporter/editor with HealthLeaders Media.

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