Teletrauma

From the McCook (NE) Daily Gazette:

A new service, called “teletrauma,” is now available at Tri Valley Health System in Cambridge to allow instant consultation on trauma cases.

In a front page article, the Indianola News reports that the new video conferencing equipment has been installed and is ready for use whenever needed. A special camera has been set up in Tri-Valley’s rural trauma room to send images to the emergency room at Good Samaritan Hospital in Kearney.

Through that connection, and a hands-free microphone worn by the attending physician, decisions can be made concerning treatment and transport.

This is another example of the dramatic changes taking place in health care. As a result, residents of rural areas are gaining more direct access to the latest technology in the medical field

Concerns About Length of Stay

From WHAS11.com

A Kentucky man who was reportedly frustrated with slow service at a hospital now faces multiple charges after police say he opened fire in the emergency room. It happened Wednesday afternoon at a hospital in Hazard.

Kentucky State Police say Eddie Grubbs was taken by ambulance to the Hazard ARH Medical Center emergency room. KSP says he then pulled out a gun and fired two shots. No one was hurt.

Grubbs was reportedly upset about how long he had to wait to be treated. One account quotes him as saying, “I just wanted to get their attention.”

Robotics Use in Mexican Medical School


From Medgadget:

Faced with a growing number of medical students and few training hospitals, this Mexican university is turning to robotic patients to better train future doctors.

The robots are dummies complete with mechanical organs, synthetic blood and mechanical breathing systems.

“The country’s rapid increase of medical students has not kept up with the number of medical facilities,” said Joaquin Lopez Barcena, an associate dean at the university’s medical school. “This a very a good learning opportunity for our students.”
The $1.3 million facility has 24 robotic patients and a computer software program that can simulate illnesses ranging from diabetes to a heart attack.

For Paola Mendoza Cortez, a first-year medical student, the robotic patients offer peace of mind.

“I would feel nervous if this was (a) real patient,” said Mendoza after drawing blood from a plastic arm. “With this (dummy patient) I can practice many times.”
With close to 15,000 enrolled students, UNAM has one of the largest medical school in Latin America. There are about 70,000 medical students enrolled in Mexico, according to the Mexican association of medical schools.

Bill proposes funding to promote apologies to patients

A new bill would create a voluntary federal program to help hospitals negotiate fair compensation with patients harmed by medical errors as an alternative to lawsuits.

The bill, introduced by Sens. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Barack Obama (D-Ill.), is modeled on an initiative called “Sorry Works!” in which hospitals own up to errors and apologize to the patients affected.

There is no companion bill in the House. Apologies can reduce malpractice lawsuits against providers and lower the compensation sought by patients, the senators said at a news conference.

Under the bill, federal grants would be available to help hospitals set up negotiation programs, hire patient-safety experts and track patient-safety trends. At deadline, the cost of the bill had not been estimated.

Participating hospitals and malpractice insurers would be required to use part of any savings to reduce physicians’ malpractice premiums. In addition, the bill would create a national medical-errors database and set up an Office of Patient Safety and Health Care Quality within HHS.

A new law signed this summer already authorized HHS to establish a medical-errors reporting system and a national network of databases. At deadline, it was unclear how the database provisions of the Clinton-Obama bill relate to the new law.

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