Rapid Growth Presents Unique Challenges for Joliet Health Care
Joliet has grown from a population of just over 106,000 to almost 150,000 since the year 2000, and the city and its neighbors only have access to a handful of hospitals. Aside from Joliet’s primary hospital, the other options available to residents are also serving numerous suburbs. During peak times of medical need, this can place strain on facilities which are overwhelmed and understaffed to meet the growing needs of the general population. Since Joliet is currently one of the fastest growing cities in the Midwest, this problem is not going to solve itself anytime soon.
Common Types of Malpractice Claims in Joliet
Not every mistake committed by a doctor can be defined as negligent or reckless and malpractice claims are filed on the basis that the doctor, nurse or staff member responsible for an injury did not act as his or her peer would have under the same circumstances. It is not uncommon, however, for medical professionals to act carelessly or irresponsibly when attempting to tend to the needs of many patients. Stress and fatigue can result in numerous mistakes which qualify as negligence or malpractice and these errors include the following.
- Misdiagnosis of your medical condition, resulting in detrimental or unneeded treatments which harm you further. It is important that doctors verify their diagnoses in order to prevent injuries that can occur from prescribing unnecessary medications or pushing surgical solutions that are not required.
- Failure to prevent or treat an infection in a timely fashion. Infections are becoming a growing concern across the country and result from a combination of factors which include unclean environments, growing drug resistance and inadequate postoperative prevention measures.
- Medical errors during surgical procedures. It is much more common for surgeons to make incisions in the wrong locations than you would be comfortable accepting if not for the knowledge that many of these errors can be fixed as long as they are noticed immediately. Surgeons who place a cut in the wrong location are usually able to repair the damage during the procedure, but unnoticed errors can have catastrophic effects.
- Anesthesia errors. Providing the wrong dosages of anesthesia medications or not properly monitoring patients’ vital signs throughout a surgical procedure can cause the patient to wake up during the procedure or overdose on the medications if an excessive dose is provided. Additionally, when the patient is positioned on his or her stomach, blood flow to the heart and brain may be reduced, causing damage to the heart or brain if the anesthesiologist does not pay attention to warning signs of oxygen deprivation.
- Prescription medication errors. Whether doctors prescribe medications that interact negatively with your existing medications, nursing staff administer the wrong dose or medications or you are prescribed the wrong medicine altogether, medicine errors can cause complications that range from minor discomfort and pain to internal bleeding and cardiac arrest. It is important that each staff member involved in prescribing or administering medication take the highest level of care to ensure patients’ safety.
How Joliet Area Hospitals are Doing When it Comes to Caring for Patients
Hospitals serve a constant volume of patients and the statistical probability of medical errors makes them inevitable. However, evaluating the history of a facility can reveal the areas of greatest concern and make the case that the policies in place are a contributing factor to your injuries when arguing negligence. Our Joliet medical malpractice attorneys have compiled the data available on the three hospitals serving Joliet and its neighbors so that you may be aware of the most pressing issues which apply to each facility.
Presence Saint Joseph Medical Center
333 North Madison Street
Joliet, IL 60435
Saint Joseph Medical Center is a level two trauma center designated to provide emergency pediatric treatment and level two perinatal care. Its readmission rates are abnormally high and this is a concern because of the additional risk of fatality that is linked to the inability of a facility to properly treat conditions on patients’ first visits. 19.3% of patients treated for pneumonia, 26.5% of those with congestive heart failure and 20.6% of heart attack patients were readmitted to this facility within thirty days of discharge. About half of all patients readmitted did not survive.
Of additional concern is how patients are cared for immediately following operative procedures. The Illinois average postoperative hip fracture rate is 0.05 per 1,000 cases whereas the rate at this facility is 0.48— almost ten times the average. 22.43 patients out of 1,000 experience postoperative respiratory failure as well compared to the state average of 7.82 per 1,000.
Only 67% of patients felt that their rooms and bathrooms were kept clean and sanitary and this presents a potential risk of infection, as unsanitary conditions allow bacteria and other communicable diseases to thrive. The last statistic of note is that only 48% of patients understood their care and how to proceed with home recovery at the time of their discharge from the hospital.
Silver Cross Hospital and Medical Centers
1900 Silver Cross Boulevard
New Lenox, IL 60451
Silver Cross Hospital in neighboring New Lenox, serves the eastern part of Joliet and is designated as a level two trauma center and level two perinatal facility by the state. The primary area of concern for this facility is its statistics regarding the treatment of strokes and ways blood clots are prevented and managed. The stroke mortality rate for this facility is 85.04 out of 1,000 compared to the state average of 70.96.
Its overall blood clot care score was 78.82%. Contributing factors to this score include the fact that 60% of patients who developed a clot during their hospital had not received preventative treatment, only 69.91% of patients undergoing surgical procedures received preventative treatment for blood clots within a day of their surgeries and only 86.67% of those admitted to the intensive care unit at risk of developing blood clots received preventative treatment within 48 hours of admission to the hospital.
Additionally, only 81.96% of patients who suffered an ischemic stroke were provided with medications to treat and prevent the formation of additional clots within 48 hours. Other concerns included the failure of doctors to prescribe medicines such as blood thinners and cholesterol medications when appropriate to reduce the risk of future strokes.
Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital
500 Remington Boulevard
Bolingbrook, IL 60440
Serving only the northernmost parts of Joliet as well as the cities of Romeoville and Bolingbrook, Adventist Bolingbrook is a level two trauma center that provides level two perinatal care. This facility has only received a favorable rating from 69% of its patients, although 71% stated that they were satisfied with their treatment. Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital excels in its overall heart failure care, stroke care and blood clot care, but its readmission rates leave much room for improvement.
19.7% of pneumonia patients, 22.6% of congestive heart failure patients and 18.8% of heart attack patients are readmitted within thirty days of being discharged.
Let us Investigate your Joliet Medical Negligence Case for Free
Many of the victims of medical malpractice are reluctant to file claims, either due to uncertainty about their chances of success or lack of awareness concerning their rights. Let the Joliet medical malpractice attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers perform an evaluation of your case to determine whether you are entitled to compensation.
A malpractice lawsuit may help you recover the money you need to pay for your medical care, time off of work and out of pocket expenses while holding the doctors and facility accountable for any actions they took which were negligent or not in the interest of patient safety.
Contact us now to speak with a Joliet malpractice attorney or arrange your free consultation. If we are unable to recover compensation on your behalf, our services will be free of charge.