Washington hospital cited for 22 care deficiencies after state audit

A state audit of Ilwaco, Wash.-based Ocean Beach Hospital revealed numerous problems with hospital documentation, equipment use and staff training, resulting in the loss of the hospital's chemotherapy services and a mandated update of policies, according to the Chinook Observer. 

State health officials visited Ocean Beach Hospital in March and found 22 deficiencies. Inspectors discovered that the hospital kept expired medication, failed to properly monitor patients in restraints and didn't separate clean and dirty items. Other issues were related to hospital documentation and concerned the timeliness, completeness and accuracy of medical record-keeping. 

In July, Ocean Beach Hospital also halted chemotherapy services because it could not comply with federal pharmacopeia regulations involving ventilation requirements. 

None of the problems put patients in immediate danger, according to Jessica Baggett, external communications supervisor at the Washington State Department of Health.

Ocean Beach Hospital has since submitted a correction plan and addressed the issues identified in the audit.

"We don't look at this process as punitive. We look at it as educational," Larry Cohen, CEO of Ocean Beach Hospital, told Chinook Observer. "The surveyors are very helpful."

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