Some Hospitals Ignore Simple Steps To Control MRSA Infection

Armen Hareyan's picture

Michael Berens and Ken Armstrong investigated MRSA - methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus – in Washington hospitals, are analyzing millions of records to track one of the nation's most widespread and preventable epidemics.

They found that Washington doesn't track the MRSA germ or its victims and the state's hospitals don't have to reveal infection rates.

The project also reveals that Washington hospitals generally do not test people for MRSA – a measure that has enabled federal veterans hospitals to reduce their cases to near zero.

Perhaps most startling is that Washington hospitals violate basic infection control measures routinely, according to inspection records.

Berens and Armstrong also found that MRSA is often omitted from death certificates, making it particularly difficult to track the infection – maybe even onscuring signs of emerging threats to public health.

This brief on Hospital infection and MRSA is reported by the Association of Health Care Journalists.


It is not surprising that the hospital infection related lawsuits are increasing in numbers. For example, see how this hospital infection lawsuit settlement is reached in Utah, reports

A Utah woman who lost three limbs and multiple organs as a result of a hospital infection after the 2005 birth of her daughter, has reached a settlement of her medical malpractice lawsuit against the hospital.

The hospital infection lawsuit was filed in 2006 by Lisa Speckman against LDS Hospital, University of Utah and Intermountain Health Care Health Plans.

Her complaint indicates that the hospital’s negligence following her February 25, 2005 delivery resulted in the development of necrotizing fasciitis, which ultimately required the amputation of both legs, her right arm and the loss of her gall bladder, reproductive organs and most of her large intestines.

Necrotizing fasciitis, which is also referred to as fasciitis necroticans, is a rare infection that occurs in the deep lawyers of the skin and subcutaneous tissues. As a result of the infection’s devastating effects, it is commonly known as a “flesh-eating” disease. In around 30% of those who develop it, the infection is fatal.

The malpractice lawsuit alleged that medical staff ignored the hospital infection symptoms Speckman experienced, and that tests were not ordered that could have led to a proper diagnosis and treatment.

According to a report in The Salt Lake Tribune, the settlement was reached in late September to resolve the case, but terms are confidential.