updated 5/20/2010 3:40:43 PM ET 2010-05-20T19:40:43

Nine hospitals in California face a combined $550,000 in penalties for endangering patients through medication errors, leaving sponges inside patients after surgery and other problems.

  1. Don't miss these Health stories
    1. Splash News
      More women opting for preventive mastectomy - but should they be?

      Rates of women who are opting for preventive mastectomies, such as Angeline Jolie, have increased by an estimated 50 percent in recent years, experts say. But many doctors are puzzled because the operation doesn't carry a 100 percent guarantee, it's major surgery -- and women have other options, from a once-a-day pill to careful monitoring.

    2. Larry Page's damaged vocal cords: Treatment comes with trade-offs
    3. Report questioning salt guidelines riles heart experts
    4. CDC: 2012 was deadliest year for West Nile in US
    5. What stresses moms most? Themselves, survey says

Four of the hospitals fined are in San Diego County, with the rest in Alameda, San Bernardino, Marin, Orange and Riverside counties.

Scripps Green Hospital in La Jolla was fined twice, a total of $125,000. In one instance, a surgeon performing a hip replacement reported discovering dried blood on an instrument being used on a patient.

A spokesman for the hospital said Thursday it was preparing a response.

Since 2007 when the fines were enacted as law, a combined $4.8 million in fines have been assessed, and $2.9 million have been collected.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Discussion comments


Most active discussions

  1. votes comments
  2. votes comments
  3. votes comments
  4. votes comments