Maine hospital outlines plan to correct spine, chest patient issues

Written by Alan Condon | June 04, 2019 | Print  | Email

Lewiston, Maine-based Central Maine Medical Center executives have laid out a plan to fix issues raised by federal investigators on how spine, chest and emergency patients are treated, reports the Sun Journal.

The hospital submitted its 10-page plan last month which was released to the Sun Journal by the CMS.

Four things to know:

1. CMS have given CMMC until June 30 to fix the issues or risk losing Medicare reimbursement.

2. The plan cites improving emergency department processes with quicker chest pain evaluations, adding nurses and restructuring how medical orders are issued for spine patients.

3. It also outlines training of medical staff and requires nurses to understand spinal precautions, especially the danger of raising the head of a spinal patient's bed.

4. CMS investigated the hospital in January, March and April, noting problems in patient care and will make another unannounced visit to see whether progress is being made.

"We feel that if CMS was to come in today, they would find we are fully in compliance," John Alexander, chief quality officer for CMMC's parent organization, Central Maine Healthcare, told the Sun Journal.

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