Federal watchdog: Nearly half of Medicare patients in long-term-care hospitals experienced harm
December 04, 2018 / Tina Reed
Nearly half of Medicare patients in long-term care facilities have experienced some type of harm as the result of their care, endangering their health and increasing Medicare costs, according to a report from a government watchdog. The report, released Tuesday by the Office of Inspector General (OIG), part of the Department of Health and Human Services, found that more than 20% of Medicare patients who have received treatment in long-term care facilities have experienced serious harm resulting from medical care or lack thereof. That harm could have been from prolonged stay, necessitating transfer to another facility, up to requiring a lifesaving intervention resulting in permanent harm or contributing to death. The findings were based on OIG's look at medical records for 587 Medicare beneficiaries admitted to long-term care hospitals (LTCHs) in March 2014.