As reported recently, a Tucson rehabilitation center is in the news again after the loss of yet another patient. When considered along with previous reports, it raises a question among some observers as to whether the patients are suffering from a pattern of medical malpractice.
Although this most recent death appears to have resulted from drug toxicity, the authorities’ investigations were unable to determine whether the lethal drug combination was accidental or intentional.
Yet, a state report regarding the loss of this patient still found significant problems regarding the rehab center’s pharmacy services, as well as inadequate staff checks on patients’ vital signs.
It seems that this for-profit facility has now suffered the loss of at least four inpatients reported during the past seven years. Following this most recent death, the organization paid a nominal fine of $250 to the State and agreed to make some changes in its policies and procedures.
In signing the enforcement agreement with the State, the center agreed to begin a random patient-monitoring program with regard to suicide risk-assessment, and provide additional training to staff.
After submitting its plan to the State designed to correct the issues which may have led to the patient’s death, the rehabilitation center is now free to continue onward with its business as usual.
A pattern of losing patients?
Even though it’s difficult to generalize about the loss of two patients during the past few months to apparent suicides, the possible pattern is still worrisome.
For example, at the time of the earlier patient suicide in January, the patient himself had rated his own depression as “10 on a scale of 1 to 10” and he had phoned his family the day before his death to tell them about suicidal thoughts.
Frankly, the loss of two patients in two months under similar circumstances begs a deeper examination and intervention. Yet, with regard to these two recent cases the State has mandated only two minor fines – A $250 fine and a $2,000 fine.
Professional legal help
Following the loss of the previous patient in January, the bereaved family is reported to have agreed to “mediation” talks with the organization. Such discussions may or may not satisfy the needs of the lost patient’s family.
Sometimes, stronger medicine is necessary in order to prevent such tragedies from happening again and enable family members to move forward. If you or someone you love has suffered from any issue arising in a hospital, care center or any other healthcare setting, you should seek professional legal help.
Bob Barber is Tucson’s leading medical malpractice attorney. He and his expert staff can help you learn the truth about what happened and why, help hold the responsible parties accountable for their actions, and fight to win the financial compensation you deserve.
To learn more, call the Bob Barber Law Firm today, at 520-293-4440