Valley Baptist Medical Center Brownsville medical malpractice attorney/lawyer

 

Valley Baptist Medical Center Brownsville medical malpractice attorney/lawyer

 
January 12, 2018

Valley Baptist Medical Center is a short term acute care hospital located at 1040 W. Jefferson Street, Brownsville, TX 78520. It has been open for nearly a century and currently has 280 patient beds.

The hospital offers medical care including back and spine, behavioral health, brain and neurology, children’s care, digestive and gastrointestinal care, an emergency room, a foot care clinic, cardiovascular and heart care, radiology imaging services (CT, MRI and CT angiography), an intensive care unit (ICU), orthopedics, palliative care, surgical services (including joint replacement, spine, laparoscopic, minimally invasive, and da Vinci robotic surgery), women’s health, a neonatal intensive care unit  (NICU), and wound care.

At first glance, I thought that Valley Baptist Medical Center would be a nonprofit institution, but the most recent Texas Department of State Health Services records reflect that it is a for-profit hospital. The hospital is owned by VHS Brownsville Hospital Company, LLC, based in Nashville, Texas.

Quality of care concerns

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services regularly sends surveyors to accredited hospitals to review patient charts and look for patient safety issues. These visits may result in the issuance of a violation to the hospital.

Since December 2011, Medicare/Medicaid has issued five violations to Valley Baptist Medical Center for quality of care concerns.

On April 4, 2013, the hospital received one violation. The violation resulted from an incident where a medical record did not contain a history and physical exam within 24 hours of a patient’s admission to the hospital. As a former hospital administrator, I recognize the importance of a history and physical in terms of a baseline for patient care. In other words, by having a physician history, physical, and exam performed within the first day of the patient’s admission to a hospital, doctors and nurses can tell whether the patient’s condition is improving or deteriorating with treatment. Failure to do this early assessment can be a danger to patient safety.

On January 24, 2012, Valley Baptist Medical Center received another violation, this time for staff treatment of a residence. The Medicare/Medicaid surveyor found that the hospital failed to report to appropriate state agencies all alleged violations involving mistreatment, neglect, or abuse, including injuries of an unknown source, and misappropriation of resident property to the hospital administrator. This is required by Texas state law. The failure of the hospital to do so was confirmed by its interim Director of Nursing and the hospital administrator.

On December 6, 2012, Medicare/Medicaid issued three separate violations to Valley Baptist Medical Center.

The first violation was for the form and retention of records, based on the surveyor’s finding that the hospital failed to ensure that a patient medical record was complete. As a former hospital administrator, I know that a medical record is the official legal document, required by law, which summarizes the patient’s medical care in a hospital. In addition to that, though, the medical record is important as a reference point to provide continuity of care with future healthcare providers.

The second violation dealt with a violation of patient rights for care in a safe setting. The surveyor expressed concern that the patient did not receive care in a safe setting because he was not monitored according to a physician order. When a doctor issues in order for monitoring a patient, it is up to the nursing staff to follow and the order and report back any abnormal findings. Failure to do so can result in a danger to patient safety.

The final violation on this date dealt with inadequate supervision of nursing care by a registered nurse. The Medicare/Medicaid surveyor found that the hospital failed to ensure the registered nurse supervised and evaluated the care for each patient. The surveyor specifically noted that the nursing staff was not monitoring patients according to physician orders and that medical record documentation was incomplete.

We are here to help

Painter Law Firm’s medical malpractice lawyers handle cases all over the State of Texas. Many of our clients from the Valley, and other parts of the state, have told us that some local attorneys shy away from investigating care at nearby hospitals. For us, that is not an issue. For a free evaluation of your potential case, call our Houston, Texas office at 281-580-8800.

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Robert Painter is an attorney at Painter Law Firm PLLC, in Houston, Texas. He represents patients and family members in medical negligence and wrongful death lawsuits against hospitals, doctors, surgeons, anesthesiologists, and other healthcare providers.

Robert Painter

Robert Painter is a medical malpractice lawyer at Painter Law Firm PLLC.

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