California fines Prime hospital $244K

The California Department of Public Health recently fined a Prime Healthcare hospital approximately $244,000 after a wrong-site nerve block and adverse events, according to state documents. 

In 2023, the department placed Redding, Calif.-based Shasta Regional Medical Center in immediate jeopardy for an adverse event in March and a surgery performed on the wrong body part in August. The first penalty came with a $94,500 fine in January, and the latter resulted in a $60,375 fine a month later. 

The hospital also has an outstanding $94,562 fine and immediate jeopardy notice from late 2023.

The adverse event was reported as patients on heart monitors not receiving timely care when monitor alarms sounded. In one case, more than three hours elapsed before a patient received care. A few days later, another patient removed their monitor and left the building without staff noticing. 

More information on the surgery is not publicly available, but a hospital spokesperson told Becker's a self-reported, "wrong-site pain block incident" happened a year ago "and corrective processes [were] put in place in 2023."

The spokesperson said Shasta Regional Medical Center earned an "A" patient safety grade from The Leapfrog Group in May and has held a five-star patient safety rating from Healthgrades since 2022.

Becker's has asked the spokesperson for clarification on the hospital's immediate jeopardy status and will update this article if more information is available.

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