Memphis hospital gets second notice to improve patient treatment

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - For the second time in less than a year, Memphis' primary public hospital is facing the loss of Medicare and Medicaid payments if it does not improve how patients are treated.

State inspectors visited the Regional Medical Center - known as The Med - in April following an unspecified complaint.

They reported seeing nurses dragging wounded patients across hospital beds and a nurse who contaminated a skin ulcer.

They also observed nurses who wore the same gloves to check different bed sores on the same patient.

Inspectors also cited the hospital for problems related to emergency care of psychiatric patients.

In response, The Med has hired new nurses who are wound care specialists, added wound care to nursing orientation and designated a nurse on each unit to monitor patients with bed sores.

It also has required emergency physicians to review hospital policies. The Med has the largest burn, trauma and newborn intensive care departments in the Memphis region.

It also has a high-risk pregnancy program and is a major teaching hospital for the University of Tennessee.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)