“Artificial Blood” to the FDA for Evaluation

From Medgadget:

Arteriocyte’s Pharmed Blood Ready to be Evaluated by FDA

Under a $1.95 million contract with the Pentagon’s DARPA project, the company has developed a process to produce fresh units of universal-donor (type O, Rhesus factor negative) packed red blood cells from hematopoietic stem cells. Although this has been possible on a small scale for many years, the main challenge is implementing this process on production-scale

The Impact of delays to admission from the emergency department on inpatient outcomes

From BMC Emergency Medicine:

Background: We sought to determine the impact of delays to admission from the Emergency Department (ED) on inpatient length of stay (LOS), and IP cost.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective analysis of 13,460 adult (>= 18 yrs) ED visits between April 1 2006 and March 30 2007 at a tertiary care teaching hospital with two ED sites in which the mode of disposition was admission to ICU, surgery or inpatient wards. We defined ED Admission Delay as ED time to decision to admit > 12 hours. The primary outcomes were IP LOS, and total IP cost.

Results: Approximately 11.6% (n=1558) of admitted patients experienced admission delay. In multivariate analysis we found that admission delay was associated with 12.4% longer IP LOS (95 % CI 6.6% – 18.5%) and 11.0% greater total IP cost (6.0% – 16.4%). We estimated the cumulative impact of delay on all delayed patients as an additional 2,183 inpatient days and an increase in IP cost of $2,109,173 at the study institution.

Conclusions: Delays to admission from the ED are associated with increased IP LOS and IP cost. Improving patient flow through the ED may reduce hospital costs and improve quality of care. There may be a business case for investments to reduce emergency department admission delays.

Female Patient Sues Over Request to Have EKG Performed by a Female

From NJ.com:

Rona Mohammedi went to Somerset Medical Center the night of Feb. 11 with severe chest pains. After hearing she would need an electrocardiogram, she asked for a female to conduct the test.

A Muslim, Mohammedi wears traditional garb, including the hijab, or head scarf. The Basking Ridge woman believes it is her religious duty to maintain modesty before strange men, and an EKG calls for wires to be applied to the chest, shoulders and wrists.

Instead of heeding her request, officials let her languish in the emergency room for five hours until 3:10 a.m., when her husband sought a transfer. She is suing the hospital for discrimination and violating the Patient Bill of Rights.

The complaint filed May 14 in Superior Court in Somerville raises the question of how far hospitals must go for religious accommodations. The rights listed in state statutes say patients can expect treatment without discrimination, and respectful care consistent with sound medical practices.