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Ottawa hospital responds to possible Medicare penalties

Posted by wlpo on June 26, 2014

If St. Elizabeth Medical Center in Ottawa has problems with patients coming down with infections or injuries while at the hospital, it comes as a surprise to hospital officials.

The Chicago Tribune put out a story last week that six Illinois hospitals including St. Elizabeth in Ottawa are at risk of having Medicare payments cut this fall because of patient infections and injuries while under their care. They used information from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. If true, St. Elizabeth could face thousands of dollars in penalties.

Brianne Riley is a spokeswoman with St. Elizabeth in Ottawa. She says they haven’t seen the official reports yet.
Riley says they’ve had only three patients with catheter-related urinary tract infections in the past 2.5 years and no patients with “central line” infections during that same period. Based on that, Riley says “we are puzzled at being placed on the penalty list”.

The potential penalties are part of new federal health law, or Obamacare.

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