Feds Say Parkland Hospital Poses ‘Threat’ To Patients

DALLAS (CBS DFW) –  Parkland Hospital is under serious scrutiny after the federal government issued a warning that conditions at the hospital pose a “serious threat” to patients’ health and safety.

Parkland is one of the busiest hospitals in the country, virtually a city within a city, but the Center for Medicaid and Medicare Service said there are serious problems there following a thorough inspection.

“The CMS has determined that Parkland Health and Hospital System no longer meets the requirements for participation in the Medicare program because of deficiencies that represent and immediate and serious threat to patient health and safety,” CMS officials said in a notice to the hospital.

The notice also states, “Unless the serious and immediate threat to patient health and safety is removed, your hospital’s Medicare agreement will be terminated on September 2, 2011.”

In a written statement by Parkland Hospital CEO Ron Anderson, “We acknowledged the seriousness of this notification. We have a tremendous responsibility to get this right – to address the deficiencies identified by CMS – and to do so as quickly and thoroughly as possible.”

Anderson also wrote, “We expected deficiencies and we are grateful for assistance in identifying them.”

The hospital has until August 20 to notify the organization about a plan to correct the problems and it’s required to put that plan into action by August 24. If that doesn’t happen, the hospital may be removed from the Medicare program.

“It is rare for the government to take such action,” CMS spokesman Bob Moos said Wednesday. “Two Parkland violations relating to infection control and emergency care issues are so serious that they triggered `immediate jeopardy’ status. That is the most severe finding we can have in a hospital, and it requires immediate attention.”

He added that each year, only two or three hospitals among more than 400 statewide face such measures.

The action comes after a two-week inspection of the hospital last month. The inspection was triggered by the death of a patient in February in the psychiatric emergency room.

The Dallas Morning News has reported that according to a CMS report on the death of George Cornell, the 49-year-old who suffered from schizophrenia and heart problems was restrained before his death without close monitoring by a nurse and without effective training of the technicians who subdued him.

Moos said that results from that investigation showed that a “full survey of the hospital was warranted.” He said the specific findings from the hospital inspection won’t be publicly released until Parkland has submitted its plans of correction.

Anderson said that 40 percent of Parkland’s funding comes from taxpayers, 16 percent from Medicare and 32 percent from Medicaid.

“Failure to accomplish these goals would result in us losing half of our revenue,” Anderson said.

Parkland, a regional center for burns and trauma, is also the main teaching hospital for the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.

(Copyright 2011 — The Associated Press contributed to this report. All Rights Reserved.)


One Comment

  1. TEX4S says:

    How can anyone be surprised by this ? That place is simply a microcosm of the bulk of its patients – ghetto.
    No 2 ways to describe this – but when 90% of your patients dont have $$ or insurance – its hard to get adequate revenue. Most of the Drs there are simply doing it for the experience – getting their med school loans paid off – or just want to help the underprivileged. My fiance is a NP Pediatrics and Parkland would pay off her loans if she worked there for 2 years. Of course, she is staying @ Baylor Grapevine…

    1. Asif says:

      Parkland is a mess even if they correct the new findings

    2. forgrownupsonly says:

      What do you mean Ghetto. You are showing how stupid you are. You have know idea what you are talking about. You better hope you never have to end up at Parkland. It would serve you right too. Never say never.

      1. Whitey says:

        That sounds like a threat from a ghetto boy.

      2. signofthetimes says:

        @forgrownupsonly…you, my friend, are so right. With this economy and jobs slipping away daily, one never knows where they may end up and unfortunately more ‘middle class’ are falling victim to this system. @Whitey, life has ways of teaching you lessons the hard way. Enjoy your charmed life while you can. You’re a fool.

      3. TwilightZone says:

        See you probably work there and are part of the problem with Parkland. The politics of Parkland is not and has never been about the patients. It covers small minded imagined and real power, territorial issues that interfere with patient care and an overall attitude of “this is my house, nobody tells me what to do in my house”. They will lie, cheat, hide and cover up deficiencies. I worked there years ago and it is a mess. Incompetence is all over the place. Those that speak out are demonized and made to look and feel undervalued until they eventually leave. It is most definitely a crooked house.

  2. Gail Riggins says:

    I have know Parkland since 1957 in the care of many of my family members. And its been a nasty hospital with no respect to the patients . its always been cold nd non careing to people. when you dont have money you just put up with it because you dont have any other place to go. And they know you cant do anything and tat you have no power to do anything about how you are treated.

  3. bdub77 says:

    and thats the BIG problem – it’s a teaching hospital, and having been in a few of those myself – I’ve never seen one like Parkland – no one there cares…sad to say, but not afraid to ask any doctor if they trained there, and if they have, i’ll refuse treatment – if I’m able to do so..so far so good. what’s really sad, is that most people that are treated there, are at the mercy of the hospital & staff – and they have no other options, and complaining apparently does no good. just sad.

  4. Kevin says:

    “Shannon said examples violations of infection prevention included staff touching a patient and then touching a surface that other people would come into contact with.”

    There had to be a lot of touching going on to get an immediate emergency citation like that.

  5. upchkn says:

    If total strangers can find the (apparent) multitude of violations in two weeks, why can’t the CEO or the CMO see them? Do they spend no time there? Or, are they just the top of the “Who cares” chain?

  6. forgrownupsonly says:

    Parkland is a County Hospital and a teaching hospital. Some of the best doctors in the country have train there. For people who have no insurance at all it is their only option. I recently took a trip to the Emergency Room to St. Paul and let me tell you the experience was a world away from Parkland. There were hardly any people in the Emergency Room and i had a bed as soon as i got there and it was very quiet, peaceful and i had a TV with remote so i could change the channels.. Sometimes at Parkland patients have to wait in chairs all night because they have no room with a bed for them to lay down in. I am bless that i have very very good insurance and my emergency bills were paid but for most people they are at the mercy of Parkland

  7. robert mathies says:

    Parkland hospital is a dangerous place- no doubt. I have been treated and received infections there as well as medicine given to me gave me major medical issues Doctors do not care and the nurse are rude and non compassionate. It is a gin mill to push people thru. There are nurse assistants that do not speak english at all. Doctors not from this country with accent so thick no one can understand them. the place is a mess ! Let alone all the homeless that hang out in there for some place just to go. .tear the place down and fire them all

  8. NiteNurse says:

    Usually when something serious like this happens it shakes a hospital to the core and problems that existed for a while start to improve. At most county hospitals they do as much as they can with so little money. Most county hospitals take care of some of the sickest patients you will ever see. Many of the patients and families are stressed to the max and they take it out on the staff which makes them seem cold and uncaring. Everyone will suffer if Parkland closes so we all need to do what we can to help it get back on it’s feet. Because if it closes these will patients will disperse to a hospital near you!

  9. Signofthetimes says:

    And then there’s Parkland’s TWIN, John Peter Smith Hospital, in Fort Worth. Need I say more?!

  10. Concerned Citizen says:

    I believe that Parkland does the best they can with what they have; like any facility there is always room for improvement. I have family that are patients at Parkland and while some areas need to show immediate improvement there are other areas that are really great. This is a facility that is truly necessary for some in Dallas County. Lets hope they can clean things up.

  11. Tiffany Higgins Barnes says:

    I truly hope the hospital can take this time to re-evaluate their practices in treatment and in patient care. I believe they are simply over-whelmed. You all know that if you were reprimanded at work, you would make all the changes necessary and then some to make sure your money was coming to you…I have no doubt that Parkland will do the same. This hospital is definitely needed in the metroplex, not just for poor people and medical students, but for burn victims and severe trauma patients. I was in that place once upon a time, where Parkland was my only option. They could have been nicer, but they really did make sure I was stable and did a fine job considering I had nothing to give. People tend to make derogatory comments when they are uneducated about reality. I hope Parkland can bounce back.

  12. taxpayer says:

    all parkliand is a money pit. for medicare and medicaid. they dont care want is wrong with the patients. just that they show up so they can bill the government. where all that money goes,nobody knows or will answer too. it is just to bad on top of that i have paid thousand of dollars in taxes . and most doctors are just passing thru and could care less. but then again…where are the good doctors??? most doctors dont care about you,just your money.

    1. NiteNurse says:

      While money is EVERYONE’S motivation for going to work I believe that most doctors do become doctors because they want to help patients. The doctors at Parkland who are residents get paid very little for the amount work they do and yes they are learning but are supervised by experienced doctors. The poor are always going to need our care it’s just unfortunate that many don’t have the means to pay for their health care.

  13. evelyn goldstein says:

    I am a Parkland Patient waiting for a transplant and i am getting really crummy service for a severe disability A patient needing a kidney transplant cant get the doctors to communicate. Four to Six months to see a PCP. Im sick! Get it together Parkland!

  14. hotmailsisters says:

    The average patient panel for a PCP at one of Parkland’s clinics is 5000-10,000 patients. Everyone is waiting. If you don’t like, support healthcare and insurance reform.

  15. Angel of Mercy says:

    At the risk of incurring someone’s wrath – and I am an RN who has worked at Parkland – would you be happier if Parkland did not exist and you had no teaching hospital and no healthcare unless you could pay for it? Are any of you unhappy consumers volunteering at Parkland? Are you doing anything other than complaining?

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