On March 9, 2018, a survey or from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services cited Park Plaza Hospital, located at 1313 Hermann Dr., Houston, TX 77004, with two violations. Park Plaza Hospital is a 418-beds general acute care hospital.
Medicare and Medicaid regularly send surveyors to conduct on-site inspections and interviews of accredited hospitals, with the goal of identifying quality of care concerns. When surveyors identify problems, they are able to issue violations. The violations are a matter of public record and also give hospital leadership the opportunity to correct identified deficiencies.
On March 9, 2018, the first violation issued to Park Plaza Hospital dealt with the hospital’s failure to develop and keep current nursing care plans for patients.
As a Houston, Texas medical malpractice attorney and former hospital administrator, I realize that a nursing care plan is an important part of quality hospital care.
Under the standard of care, registered nurses are required to prepare a goal-driven nursing care plan that is used to guide patient care. This is part of the nursing process, which involves continuous assessment, identification of needs, modification of the nursing care plan, as needed, and reassessment. When a nursing care plan is lacking, it allows for disruption of the continuity of care between nursing shifts and may place patients in danger.
The Medicare/Medicaid surveyor reviewed medical records at Park Plaza Hospital and found that one patient was admitted with the diagnosis of unstable angina, but did not have a plan of care initiated. Of course, angina presents the possibility of a dangerous heart condition that requires close monitoring and care.
The surveyor found another patient who was admitted to the hospital with the diagnoses of pyelonephritis (a kidney condition), sepsis (a blood infection), and a history of diabetes. A plan of care was in place, but it was inadequate because it did not address alteration in fluid and electrolyte imbalance or diabetes. The surveyor interviewed a registered nurse, who agreed that nursing care plans should reflect the current patient’s current problems and should be completed at admission and updated during every 12-hour shift.
The second violation issued to Park Plaza Hospital on March 9, 2018, dealt with the hospital leadership’s failure to ensure that its healthcare staff maintain the principles and practices for preventing the transmission of infectious agents.
The surveyor personally observed three registered nurses and one certified nurse assistant entering patient rooms without using an alcohol-based hand rub. This violated the hospital’s February 2012 Hand Hygiene policy, which stated that, if hands are not visibly soiled, staff should use an alcohol-based hand rub for routinely decontaminating hands and all other clinical situations.
The surveyor met with the Chief Nursing Officer, who agreed that staff should use the alcohol-based hand gel when entering and leaving patient rooms.
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As a Houston, Texas medical negligence and wrongful death lawyer, I have handled many cases involving care provided at Park Plaza Hospital.
If you or someone you love has been seriously injured by poor care at Park Plaza Hospital, in Houston, or any other hospital in Texas, our experienced medical negligence attorneys can help. Click here to send us a confidential email via our “Contact Us” form or call us at 281-580-8800.
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Robert Painter is a medical malpractice attorney at Painter Law Firm PLLC, in Houston, Texas. He is a former hospital administrator who represents patients and family members in medical negligence and wrongful death lawsuits against hospitals, physicians, surgeons, anesthesiologists, and other healthcare providers. In 2017, H Texas magazine named him one of Houston’s top lawyers. In May 2018, the Better Business Bureau recognized Painter Law Firm PLLC with its Award of Distinction.