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August 2011 Archives

Before Indiana Considers Spending Money Building a Permanent Stage, It Should Compensate The State Fair Victims

Two more individuals who were seriously injured when a temporary stage collapsed at the Indiana fairgrounds last week have died from their injuries, bringing the number of total fatalities to seven. In the wake of these two tragic deaths comes an article in this morning's Indianapolis Star that raises an interesting question, "Should the Indiana State Fair build a permanent stage?"

Indiana Government Adds Insult to Injury By Denying Responsibility and Failing to Promptly Compensate Victims of State Fair Catastrophe

Sunday August 14 at approximately 8:49 p.m. EDT, a wind gust estimated at 60 to 70 mph caused the Main Grandstand Stage at the Indiana State Fair to collapse, killing five people and injuring another 45. Since the accident, the Indiana Government has steadfastly denied it has any responsibility for what happened. Governor Mitch Daniels has said it was a "freak" accident, a "fluke" that could not have been prevented. Brad Weaver, commander of special operations for the Indiana State Police, when asked whether it was possible to foresee the wind gusts and evacuate people earlier, said "absolutely not".

Illinois surgery centers and infection risk

One of the primary risks of surgery is the possibility of a post-operative infection. Medical malpractice occurs when health care facilities fail to maintain proper standards of care. In the case of infection-control problems, the situation is severe in at least one type of Illinois facility.

Medical malpractice and hospital reputation

A good rating from patients may hide serious flaws in the care provided at a hospital. A recent review of Medicare data has shown that many of the hospitals that received top marks from patients had a higher rate of death among patients suffering heart attacks, heart failure or pneumonia. Victims of medical malpractice may confuse friendly service and a good reputation for competent care. The research certainly indicates that patient-survey data is not necessarily a good way to choose where to have a medical procedure done.

Salmonella scare leads to turkey product recall

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continues to search for the source of a salmonella outbreak that has killed one person and left more than 70 others seriously ill. After an internal investigation, Cargill has decided to recall 36 million pounds of potentially contaminated products made from fresh and frozen ground turkey. In addition, the company has stopped all production of ground turkey at the Arkansas facility suspected to be the source of the salmonella outbreak.

An eye on worker health and safety

Many industries rely on the use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to make the workplace safe for their workers. Unfortunately, a surprising number of construction and other workplace accidents occur because PPE were not used properly, or at all. According to a recent survey, roughly 9 out of 10 safety professionals acknowledged that they had witnessed workers not wearing safety equipment when they should. An additional twenty-nine percent said that they had seen workers not using PPE many times.

Campers mourn victim in tragic drowning accident

A 15-year-old Illinois boy drowned during an organized swim held at his camp in Michigan. The tragic death occurred despite the presence of camp counselors and lifeguards. The boy was one of 15 young men swimming in water roughly 10 feet deep when he went under. By the time lifeguards were able to pull him up some 15-20 minutes later, he was unconscious and not responding to their efforts to revive him. He was taken by ambulance to an area hospital where he was later declared dead.

FDA medical device approval process under fire

A series of high profile recalls led the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to seek recommendations for how the medical device approval system could be improved. Recently, defective product recalls involving Medtronic defibrillators and DuPuy artificial hips have drawn significant attention to how the FDA grants approval for medical devices. These and many other medical devices were approved under a fast-track process known as 510(k). According to at least one group, the process is inherently flawed.

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