Injured vacationers may have an increased risk of suffering adverse medical effects when seeking care at one of the country’s least safe hospitals. While traveling, slips and falls, car accidents, and other such incidents may cause serious injuries for which people must seek immediate medical treatment. Thinking all hospitals provide the same level of care, people in such situations often give little thought to the safety of the facility at which they seek treatment. Errors or neglect at low-ranked hospitals may lead to a worsening Injured While Traveling,development of additional ailments, or even death.
Ranking America’s Least Safe Hospitals
Some hospitals do not provide the same level of care, and thus, do not rank as well as others for patient safety. According to the Leapfrog Group’s Spring of 2021 reports, 192 hospitals received D grades and 10 received F grades. The group calculates numerical scores for eligible facilities using up to 27 different patient safety measures. It then converts these scores to letter grades – with A as the best grade possible and F as the worst.
Among the hospitals with D and F grades in some of the nation’s most well-traveled states include the following:
- New York Community Hospital in Brooklyn, New York – F grade
- Los Angeles Community Hospital in Los Angeles, California – F grade
- Bayfront Health St. Petersburg in St. Petersburg, Florida – D grade
- University Medical Center of Southern Nevada in Las Vegas, Nevada – D grade
- United Memorial Medical Center in Houston, Texas – D grade
Overall, the Leapfrog Group’s data shows North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, West Virginia, Arkansas, and New York to have the lowest percentage of well-ranked hospitals for patient safety.
Factors Affecting Patient Safety
Several factors affect patient safety at hospitals across the country, and thus, figure into the safety grades assigned to hospitals. When assessing hospital safety and care standards, the Leapfrog Group and the federal government consider things such as the development of infections, complications, and never events and other medical negligence. They may also take into account factors such as the hospital’s established safety procedures, communication, readmissions, and mortality rates.
Staying Safe While Hospitalized
Although patients themselves cannot prevent all the possible hazards they may face in the hospital, they can take certain steps to help improve their safety. Proper hand hygiene provides essential protection against the transmission of germs or bacteria. Patients should wash their hands often, ask visitors to wash their hands upon arriving and leaving, and make sure that any health care providers who enter their room have also taken the appropriate hand-washing precautions. Since only patients themselves may know if they feel unwell, they should also report any signs or symptoms of infections right away.
Most people never consider the possibility of getting sicker or worse, dying, due to substandard care in the hospital, especially while on vacation. If such situations occur, however, consulting with a medical malpractice lawyer may help them understand their options for recovering compensatory damages from the health care provider or facility responsible for their injuries.