WOODLAND HILLS—The California Department of Public Health has fined 10 hospitals, including Kaiser Foundation Hospital in Woodland Hills, on February 11, after investigations found the facilities did not comply with requirements, and consequently have caused, or were likely to cause, serious injury or death to patients.
According to a statement from the Department of Public Health, the Woodland Hills hospital “failed to ensure the health and safety of a patient when it did not follow policies and procedures for safe distribution and administration of medication.” The facility has received a fine of $50,000.
According to the Department of Public Health’s report, the patient, a 66-year-old female, received 19 doses of three different forms of narcotic medicines within six hours. The report reveals that the patient had a bedside patient-controlled pain medication-dispensing pump, which resulted in an unauthorized family member administering the narcotic medications to the patient, who then died nine days later.
This is the hospital’s first Immediate Jeopardy administrative penalty. Immediate Jeopardy is defined by the government as, “A situation in which the provider’s noncompliance with one or more requirements of participation has caused, or is likely to cause, serious injury, harm, impairment, or death to a resident.”
“When an adverse unanticipated outcome happens, even if normal health-related procedures have been followed, we rigorously investigate the result in and function challenging to make changes to avoid it from occurring once again,” said Kaiser in a statement. “We embrace that accountability, and these rare events reinforce our commitment to continuous improvement, patient safety and high excellent care.”
The hospitals can appeal an administrative penalty by requesting a hearing within 10 days of notification.