(EMTALA) “ER and after: St. Vincent gets it right on tough night”

From the News Telegram:

It’s an ER horror story: A patient with fever and pain from an abscess seeks treatment at St. Vincent Hospital. Emergency room doctors determine the patient has flesh-eating bacteria and needs an immediate operation. The surgeon on call that night was summoned, but declined to come in.

According to a Boston Globe report April 23, the Worcester hospital was one of three in the state recently faulted in cases involving emergency room patients sent elsewhere.

The failure of the on-call surgeon to come to the hospital that night was unacceptable to the doctors on staff, and they wisely transferred the patient to a competitor, UMass Memorial Medical Center.

Glucose, Insulin and Potassium: N.M. Doctors Study Way to ‘Buy Time’ for Heart Attack Patients

From JEMS:

Heart attack patients are half as likely to suffer cardiac arrest or death if paramedics give them an IV solution of glucose, insulin and potassium during transport to the hospital, according to a large study performed in New Mexico and other sites. Patients who received the inexpensive solution also experienced less damage to the heart than those who received a placebo, according to a study published March 28 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Minnesota: Emergency medicine delivery, via postal service, will be tested

From Twin Cities:

Public health experts will test in the Twin Cities next month whether mail carriers can quickly distribute medications during a simulated emergency.

On Sunday, May 6, personnel from the U.S. Postal Service will deliver a simulated supply of the antibiotic doxycycline to some 37,000 households in four ZIP codes across the metro area.

The target ZIP codes include portions of St. Paul, North Minneapolis, Robbinsdale, Crystal and Golden Valley, according to a statement from the Minnesota Department of Health.

Only residential addresses will receive the simulated antibiotics, which will take the form of an empty pill bottle. People living in the 55101, 55102, 55411 and 55422 ZIP code areas will be notified of the exercise a few days before the event takes place.