I'll share bits of the May 26, 2011 state inspection report from Steve Brigham's Allentown Medical Services.
First, a priceless look at what Brigham considers an adequate patient safety meeting:
Review of the Patient Safety Meeting minutes for the March 16, 2011, meeting consisted of the following: "There is no report of an incident or event at this time. No investigations and actions needed at this time. Upon review, the quality of patient safety is fine at this time. None at this time (regarding recommendations to eliminate future incidents and serious events). No incidents or serious events at this time."
I'll steal the words of the immortal Flynn Rider here:
Really let that seep in. What are you getting? Because to me, that's part man-smell, and the other part is really bad man-smell. I don't know why, but overall it just smells like the color brown. Your thoughts?
Where am I going with this? I'm going further into the report. I just wanted the fact that the patient safety folks rang out the "All is well!" Now let's move on, shall we?
The health department inspectors seemed to agree more with the "really bad man-smell" than with the "A-OK!"
Based on a tour of the facility on May 26, 2011, and interview with staff, it was determined that the Allentown Medical Center failed to maintain a safe and sanitary environment.
The health inspectors looked at the "sterilized" instruments stored in the procedure rooms, ready to use on patients. They found "sterilized" instruments dumped into drawers and plastic bins.
These surgical instruments had an of accumulation brown debris in the hinge areas and brown staining on the inside of the packages. Interview with EMP1 at the time of the observation confirmed the brown debris in the hinges of the surgical instruments and the brown stains on the inside of the surgical packages. EMP1 also confirmed that these surgical instruments were considered sterile and ready for patient use.
Looks like Flynn nailed it with the color brown, nu? Though "brown" isn't enough to touch on the expiration dates that were as much as eight years out of date.
Moving right along to the no-doubt charming recovery room:
The Recovery Area was an open room containing three black vinyl recliners for patients. There were no curtains between the chairs to provide patient privacy during recovery. The seat of the middle recliner and the left arm of the chair were were repaired with black duct tape. The chair immediately to the right had three areas on the seat of the chair where the white stuffing underneath was showing thru. .... There were blankets and pillows in the Recovery Area for patient use. Each of the patient recovery chairs had a heating pad covered with a removable blue covering. EMP1 confirmed that laundry of these patient care items, the pillows, blankets and heating pad covers, was completed by staff who took them home to launder "every once in awhile".
The Snugly Duckling is starting to really look like a five-star joint in comparison.
Let's move on to the scrub room:
There was a freezer in the scrub room which was identified by EMP1 and by signage as "Infectious Waste". EMP1 opened the freezer. There was multiple areas of a brown red frozen splatter and smear marks on the inside door of the freezer, on the rubber gasket (seal) between the freezer door and the freezer and on all sides of the interior of the freezer. There was also a thick layer of this brown red frozen material on the bottom of the freezer. EMP1 identified this brown red frozen material as frozen blood.
There was a suitcase stored under the counter. EMP1 opened the suitcase. There was a musty odor. Review of the contents of the suitcase revealed instruments wrapped in blue sterile packages with parts of the surgical instruments protruding through the wrap. EMP1 confirmed the musty odor of the suitcase and that the instruments were protruding through the blue wrap. EMP1 also confirmed that these instruments are considered sterile.
One can almost hear Brigham's marketing people. "Don't worry. Very quaint place. Perfect for you."