When Hurrican Katrina struck in New Orleans, Memorial Medical Center was not prepared for the emergency according to a class action lawsuit filed against it.  The suit contended that the hospital did not develop a proper evacuation plan or take other emergency-related steps.  The hospital lost power during the hurricane and its backup generators also failed to operate, causing temperatures inside the hospital to soar and contributing to the deaths of some patients.  The settlement will provide compensation to the majority of the 187 patients that were in the hospital at the time of the hurricane.

Although the hospital denied wrongdoing or liability in the settlement, the hospital agreed to pay $25 million dollars into a fund over the next two years.
That is a hefty price to pay for not being prepared enough during an emergency. While it is never easy to predict what kinds of disasters may strike, I think it is the job of the hospital to make sure it has basic back up systems to ensure the safety of its patients.
by Simon July 16, 2012 at 05:11 AM
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