Many Pittsburgh residents will need to spend some time in the hospital at some point in their lives. A hospital stay may be necessary to recover from surgery, a serious illness or another medical condition. Most people believe hospital stays are designed to help a person get better but occasionally the opposite can be true. The failure to diagnose a medical condition is serious but so is a superbug infection.
Hospital infections are very serious throughout the United States. Although one would think that hospitals are sterile environments, they in fact can harbor very serious bacteria that can be hard to kill. Each year almost 650,000 Americans develop an infection during a hospital stay. Of those who develop an infection, around 75,000 die from them.
Why? Because many patients are very sick and vulnerable when they are in the hospital and hospital workers use the same equipment on them easily spreading the bacteria between patients. And many times these infections are immune to even the most powerful antibiotics.
Patients in hospitals need to be aware of the superbugs they can acquire while a patient or even a visitor. It is important for hospitals to follow the established protocol for managing infections including wearing gowns, masks and gloves. They also need to accurately report the infections and be transparent about their infection rates.
Families who have been affected by a serious superbug infection may want to speak with a legal professional skilled in medical malpractice. An attorney may be able to hold the medical provider and hospital accountable for their negligence.
Source: consumerreports.org, “How your hospital can make you sick,” July 29, 2015