What Systems Should Hospital Staff Follow to Monitor Medical Conditions?
Monitoring a medical condition in a patient requires following set medical standards and guidelines that have been established to ensure that treatment is working and that a patient is recovering.
Medical schools at universities and hospitals that oversee surgery and treatment devise policies and protocols to prevent medical conditions from worsening or from occurring in the first place.
Study Reveals Failure to Monitor Infection and Ventilator Use
Columbia University conducted research that was published in the American Journal of Infection Control. The study reviewed infection control efforts at U.S. hospitals and was the most comprehensive study done in 30 years.
Infection control efforts are a specific type of patient monitoring. The study found that even intensive care units were lax in complying with policies. This was particularly shocking since ICUs are more prone to monitoring the devices they use than other areas of hospitals. Use of central lines, urinary catheters and ventilators is common in ICUs.
Best practices for preventing infections includes using checklists that help medical staff prevent bloodstream infections and avoid pneumonia in ventilator patients.
Note: Improperly inserted, utilized and maintained catheters can transmit deadly infections to the bloodstream.
Note: One straightforward and easily monitored item on a ventilator checklist is keeping patients elevated in bed, with the head higher than the feet. This one simple method can help prevent pneumonia.
The study found:
If you suspect that a failure to monitor a patient’s medical condition resulted in serious harm or death, consult with an experienced attorney. At Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP, we offer a free initial consultation to discuss concerns about medical malpractice.