Hastings Hospital corrects deficiencies after CMS probe of improper syringe use

CMS found Tahlequah, Okla.-based W.W. Hastings Hospital to be in compliance after an investigation found a nurse improperly administered medication through a reused syringe in June, potentially exposing 186 patients to HIV and hepatitis C, CBS-affiliated TV station KOTV reports.

The son of Cherokee Nation's principal chief has been identified as the nurse in question.  

CMS accepted the hospital's plan to correct areas where it was deemed out compliance, including nursing services, pharmaceutical services and infection control.

The corrective plan updated the hospital's medication administration policy, and the hospital took several steps to address infection control deficiencies. Sanitizing wipes were placed in the medication preparation area, and staff was instructed that medications from the Omnicell are for immediate use. Staff also was instructed on surgical attire and infection control precautions. Devices were placed for staff to hang IV bags; sharps containers were placed in areas closest to where medication is administered; and hygiene units were placed in preoperative and postanesthesia care units.

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