Fed Government Removes Many Hospital Errors from Public Access

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services removed data about many serious hospital errors from public access earlier this month, preventing patients from thoroughly researching the malpractice rate of various hospitals

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(Time) – The federal government has stopped disclosing some hospital errors to the public, preventing people from being able to thoroughly research the conditions of a hospital prior to a visit.

USA Today reports that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) previously maintained a record of many avoidable mistakes called “hospital acquired conditions” (HACS) on its Hospital Compare website, but removed eight of these HACS last year — including instances such as patients given the wrong blood type during a transfusion, foreign objects left in patients’ bodies during surgery and a score of other life-threating errors. The data was instead provided on a less accessible public spreadsheet that disappeared earlier this month.

The Hospital Compare site now details just 13 conditions including the rate of infectious diseases being contracted after surgery. CMS says that some uncommon HACS were removed to reflect measurements from reliable sources such as Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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