Health Law & Business News

California Hospital’s Error Bars Challenge to Sponge Fine

Jan. 13, 2021, 9:34 PM

A California hospital can’t challenge a $50,000 fine after a sponge was left in a patient in 2010 because its interpretation of a state agency order and relevant statutes was unreasonable, an appeals court said Wednesday.

The California Department of Public Health fined Saint Francis Memorial Hospital for not having appropriate sponge-count policies and for failing to effectively train on and ensure compliance with those policies.

Because the department’s decision was made effective immediately, reconsideration was unavailable, and the statute of limitations for petitioning for judicial review began to run, the California Court of Appeals, First District, said.

The department...

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