Two employees at an Ohio hospital have been placed on leave after the wrong patient received a kidney transplant earlier this month.
It’s unclear exactly how the patients at University Hospitals in Cleveland got mixed up.
A spokesperson for University Hospitals told WKYC that the patient who received the kidney is recovering and that the kidney was compatible.
“We are dismayed that an error recently occurred resulting in one patient receiving a kidney intended for another,” spokesperson George Stamatis told WKYC. “Another patient’s transplant surgery has been delayed.”
The hospital is working with the United Network for Organ Sharing, the organization that manages transplants, to investigate what happened.
“We have offered our sincerest apologies to these patients and their families. We recognize they entrusted us with their care. The situation is entirely inconsistent with our commitment to helping patients return to health and live life to the fullest,” Stamatis told WKYC.
There are more than 100,000 patients across the United States waiting for kidneys, and patients normally wait five to 10 years to find a match, according to UCLA Health.
30. Janitors and cleaners, except maids and housekeeping cleaners, earn an average of $31,700 a year, and there are 79,690 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Keep buildings in clean and orderly condition. Perform heavy cleaning duties, such as cleaning floors, shampooing rugs, washing walls and glass, and removing rubbish. Duties may include tending furnace and boiler, performing routine maintenance activities, notifying management of need for repairs, and cleaning snow or debris from sidewalk.
29. Orderlies earn an average of $31,820 a year, and there are 36,340 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Transport patients to areas such as operating rooms or X-ray rooms using wheelchairs, stretchers, or moveable beds. May maintain stocks of supplies or clean and transport equipment.
28. Nursing assistants earn an average of $33,680 a year, and there are 406,500 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Provide basic patient care under direction of nursing staff. Perform duties such as feed, bathe, dress, groom, or move patients, or change linens. May transfer or transport patients. Includes nursing care attendants, nursing aides, and nursing attendants.
27. Cooks (institution and cafeteria) earn an average of $33,880 a year, and there are 34,660 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Prepare and cook large quantities of food for institutions, such as schools, hospitals, or cafeterias; clean and inspect galley equipment, kitchen appliances, and work areas to ensure cleanliness and functional operation.
26. Phlebotomists earn an average of $36,300 a year, and there are 50,040 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Draw blood for tests, transfusions, donations, or research. May explain the procedure to patients and assist in the recovery of patients with adverse reactions.
25. Security guards earn an average of $39,000 a year, and there are 43,840 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Guard, patrol, or monitor premises to prevent theft, violence, or infractions of rules. May operate X-ray and metal detector equipment.
24. Pharmacy technicians earn an average of $41,160 a year, and there are 69,640 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Prepare medications under the direction of a pharmacist. May measure, mix, count out, label, and record amounts and dosages of medications according to prescription orders.
23. Emergency medical technicians and paramedics earn an average of $41,320 a year, and there are 49,330 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Assess injuries, administer emergency medical care, and extricate trapped individuals. Transport injured or sick persons to medical facilities.
22. Medical dosimetrists, medical records specialists, and health technologists and technicians (all other) earn an average of $50,900 a year, and there are 114,200 employed in hospitals.
This is a catch-all category that includes medical dosimetrists, medical records specialists, and health technologists and technicians.
21. Surgical technologists earn an average of $51,350 a year, and there are 78,650 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Assist in operations, under the supervision of surgeons, registered nurses, or other surgical personnel. May help set up operating room, prepare and transport patients for surgery, adjust lights and equipment, pass instruments and other supplies to surgeons and surgeon’s assistants, hold retractors, cut sutures, and help count sponges, needles, supplies, and instruments.
20. Clinical laboratory technologists and technicians earn an average of $57,740 a year, and there are 158,930 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Perform complex medical laboratory tests for diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May train or supervise staff. Operate, calibrate, or maintain equipment used in quantitative or qualitative analysis, such as spectrophotometers, calorimeters, flame photometers, or computer-controlled analyzers.
19. Dietitians and nutritionists earn an average of $64,800 a year, and there are 21,980 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Plan and conduct food service or nutritional programs to assist in the promotion of health and control of disease. May supervise activities of a department providing quantity food services, counsel individuals, or conduct nutritional research.
18. Radiologic technologists and technicians earn an average of $65,250 a year, and there are 126,170 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Take X-rays and CAT scans or administer nonradioactive materials into patient’s blood stream for diagnostic purposes. Includes technologists who specialize in other scanning modalities.
17. Public relations specialists earn an average of $66,070 a year, and there are 4,810 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Engage in promoting or creating an intended public image for individuals, groups, or organizations. May write or select material for release to various communications media.
16. Healthcare social workers earn an average of $66,330 a year, and there are 52,040 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Provide individuals, families, and groups with the psychosocial support needed to cope with chronic, acute, or terminal illnesses. Services include advising family care givers, providing patient education and counseling, and making referrals for other services. May also provide care and case management or interventions designed to promote health, prevent disease, and address barriers to access to healthcare.
15. Registered nurses earn an average of $81,630 a year, and there are 1,832,950 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Assess patient health problems and needs, develop and implement nursing care plans, and maintain medical records. Administer nursing care to ill, injured, convalescent, or disabled patients. May advise patients on health maintenance and disease prevention or provide case management. Licensing or registration required.
14. Nuclear medicine technologists earn an average of $81,660 a year, and there are 12,740 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Prepare, administer, and measure radioactive isotopes in therapeutic, diagnostic, and tracer studies using a variety of radioisotope equipment. Prepare stock solutions of radioactive materials and calculate doses to be administered by radiologists. Subject patients to radiation. Execute blood volume, red cell survival, and fat absorption studies following standard laboratory techniques.
13. Physical therapists earn an average of $92,960 a year, and there are 65,190 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Assess, plan, organize, and participate in rehabilitative programs that improve mobility, relieve pain, increase strength, and improve or correct disabling conditions resulting from disease or injury.
12. Physician assistants earn an average of $117,110 a year, and there are 32,840 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Provide healthcare services typically performed by a physician, under the supervision of a physician. Conduct complete physicals, provide treatment, and counsel patients. May, in some cases, prescribe medication. Must graduate from an accredited educational program for physician assistants.
11. Nurse practitioners earn an average of $118,350 a year, and there are 53,960 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Diagnose and treat acute, episodic, or chronic illness, independently or as part of a healthcare team. May focus on health promotion and disease prevention. May order, perform, or interpret diagnostic tests such as lab work and X-rays. May prescribe medication. Must be registered nurses who have specialized graduate education.
10. Medical and health-services managers earn an average of $127,090 a year, and there are 137,800 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate medical and health services in hospitals, clinics, managed care organizations, public health agencies, or similar organizations.
9. Pharmacists earn an average of $128,120 a year, and there are 83,990 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Dispense drugs prescribed by physicians and other health practitioners and provide information to patients about medications and their use. May advise physicians and other health practitioners on the selection, dosage, interactions, and side effects of medications.
8. Financial managers earn an average of $150,420 a year, and there are 10,310 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Plan, direct, or coordinate accounting, investing, banking, insurance, securities, and other financial activities of a branch, office, or department of an establishment.
7. General internal medicine physicians earn an average of $172,130 a year, and there are 16,900 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Physicians who diagnose and provide non-surgical treatment of diseases and injuries of internal organ systems. Provide care mainly for adults who have a wide range of problems associated with the internal organs.
6. Family medicine physicians earn an average of $194,010 a year, and there are 19,790 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Physicians who diagnose, treat, and help prevent diseases and injuries that commonly occur in the general population. May refer patients to specialists when needed for further diagnosis or treatment.
5. Nurse anesthetists earn an average of $196,700 a year, and there are 14,560 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Administer anesthesia, monitor patients’ vital signs, and oversee patient recovery from anesthesia. May assist anesthesiologists, surgeons, other physicians, or dentists. Must be registered nurses who have specialized graduate education.
4. Chief executives earn an average of $214,550 a year, and there are 5,690 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Determine and formulate policies and provide overall direction of companies or private and public sector organizations within guidelines set up by a board of directors or similar governing body. Plan, direct, or coordinate operational activities at the highest level of management with the help of subordinate executives and staff managers.
3. Surgeons earn an average of $219,540 a year, and there are 10,050 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Physicians who treat diseases, injuries, and deformities by invasive, minimally invasive, or noninvasive surgical methods, such as using instruments, appliances, or by manual manipulation.
2. Obstetricians and gynecologists earn an average of $220,680 a year, and there are 4,570 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Physicians who provide medical care related to pregnancy or childbirth and those who diagnose, treat, and help prevent diseases of women, particularly those affecting the reproductive system.
1. Anesthesiologists earn an average of $226,270 a year, and there are 4,200 employed in hospitals.
What they do, according to O*NET: Physicians who administer anesthetics prior to, during, or after surgery or other medical procedures.
Method and data source
The coronavirus pandemic has had an effect on almost everyone’s daily life in some way. Hospital staff in particular are confronting the virus every day and putting their own health at risk to help test or treat those infected by coronavirus.
Hospitals also have long been a big employer. BLS figures indicate that hospitals employ around 5.14 million Americans, according to the most recent data in April.
People who work in hospitals perform a wide range of jobs, including nurses who take care of patients, lab technologists who run complicated tests to detect disease, and radiology technicians who manage the scans that can help diagnose patients.
There are about 6,090 hospitals across the US today, according to industry group the American Hospital Association, ranging from nonprofit community ones to for-profit hospitals and hospitals run by state and local governments or the federal government.
According to a Bloomberg report from 2019 citing data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, four out of the top five highest-paid jobs in the US are in the medical field, with physicians, surgeons, and general practitioners reporting salaries over $200,000.
Because of this, Insider decided to look at how their coworkers fare in hospitals based on the latest industry-specific data from May 2020. To do this, we took a look at typical salaries in 30 selected hospitals jobs with various job duties. This includes various types of physicians as well as other hospital positions, such as security guards and cooks.
My heart ran cold as the doctor sent us a message on WhatsApp about my father’s deteriorating condition. “He has an inflammation in his lungs – given his age and medical history – you should be prepared to hospitalize him.”
My father has Parkinson’s, a heart condition, weak lungs and high blood pressure. I kept thinking: “Where am I going to get a bed? Or oxygen?”
On April 15, my 75-year-old parents, 15-year-old-son, and I tested positive for coronavirus. We were shocked. We were extremely cautious when it came to protecting ourselves from COVID-19, however it did not seem enough in the face of the the rising infection rate in India.
But as a doctor friend later would tell me: “The way things are right now, you could test a random person on the street and he or she would possibly test positive.”
If India escaped COVID-19 relatively lightly last year, we are living a nightmare in this second wave.
On Tuesday, India announced it recorded 323,144 new cases, and 2,771 deaths in the previous 24 hours. On Monday, for the fifth straight day, the country set a new global record for daily cases in the pandemic.
In Noida, the satellite town of the capital New Delhi where we live, there is also a huge shortage of beds and oxygen. Hospitals have been sending out urgent appeals for oxygen.
My social media feed has been one long ream of urgent pleas from friends, acquaintances, and complete strangers. Someone’s friend, someone’s sister, someone’s father or mother or grandparent need help.
For the first two days after our positive tests, we anxiously monitored my father. At first, he had no obvious symptoms. But then his oxygen levels were dropping consistently.
My heart was in turmoil. I thought that, if his condition continued to deteriorate, I would not be able to wheel him into a hospital to get him the required care.
On the evening of April 17, I messaged our family doctor with our blood reports and told her that my father’s saturation levels were fluctuating below 94. She gave a list of hospitals I should call to get him admitted. And then she was gone. Doctors are severely overworked, too.
After half a day of calling, I was at my wit’s end. No one had a bed available.
The next two days went by in a frenzy of friends trying to help with leads. As I chased hospitals, an acquaintance suggested I get in touch with her friend, a lung doctor. She suggested I immediately get a scan done to see what condition his lungs were in.
I’d tested positive but no one was coming to help my father. No one from the authorities has called to check on us, nor has any health worker visited. I was desperate and so I decided to head out, in my COVID positive state, to get him the care he needed.
On April 20, still weak from my own infection, I somehow hauled him onto his wheelchair and took him to a nearby COVID-19 hospital.
As an attendant wheeled my father into the scan room, I sank into a chair in the waiting area.
I saw it fill up with patients. It was 7 a.m. but there were already at least 10 people waiting for their scans. When I went back in the afternoon to collect the report on my father, the number had more than doubled.
“Are there any beds available at all?” I asked the chief medical officer, feebly, knowing she would say no. She looked at me with kindness, and sadness. I managed a small smile, too.
I brought my father back home that day. My fingers had remained tightly crossed through the day as I hoped for his condition to remain stable.
Friends and acquaintances, even sources and professional contacts, called and offered to help but I knew we were as helpless as each other. I drew some strength from their concern.
On the evening of April 21, I consulted the lung doctor once again with the test results. She confirmed that my father had inflammation in his lungs and I should start looking for a hospital bed.
“I know how difficult that would be at the moment,” she said. “But let’s hope he responds to the medicines.”
Her hospital had no beds available either.
I lost count of the calls I made that evening. Everything was full. I would get a lead and dial the number. They either wouldn’t pick up, the number wouldn’t connect or the lines would be perpetually busy. I gave up after a while.
“Whatever the emergency, we will have to deal with it at the time,” I told my mother. She nodded quietly.
Over the last few days, however, my father started responding to the medicines. He began to talk coherently. He sat up and began eating. And most importantly, his oxygen levels stabilized.
He has made it through. But if his condition had worsened, I don’t know what we could have done.
I’ve seen what happens when a broken system is overwhelmed
I am still holding onto that list of hospitals and medical resources I made. I am keeping my fingers crossed that my parents will be able to get the second dose of their vaccines without much trouble.
But I have seen what happens when a broken system is overwhelmed.
The tragedy that’s unfolding here is the world’s biggest COVID-19 crisis since the pandemic began more than a year ago. As I write this, an oxygen express train, the first one of its kind and carrying 70 tonnes of the gas, has reached Delhi.
Countries across the world are lending a hand. The Indian government announced on Sunday that they would be setting up 551 oxygen plants.
Why did we not boost our capabilities before? The oxygen plants could have been set up while cases were plummeting. Global trends should have taught us the second wave would be worse than the first one. There are going to be more until the world is vaccinated.
From May 1, anyone over 18 will be able to get vaccinated. The government will have to ramp up vaccine production urgently. Over the last few weeks, many states have reported shortages.
Why was the Indian government so desperate to announce an end to the pandemic? Only last month, the health minister – himself a doctor – said India was approaching the “end game” of COVID-19.
On April 17 – when I was anxiously watching my father’s oxygen levels deteriorate – Prime Minister Narendra Modi was at an election rally in West Bengal, praising the size of the crowd that was too big for anyone to socially distance.
On Monday, I walked into a small crematorium near my home, where there were seven pyres burning. There were no hospital staff or health workers to certify the causes of their deaths, so we won’t know how many were because of COVID-19.
One local told me: “I have never seen so many bodies burning here at the same time.”
He said that around 83% of employees have already been vaccinated, including 95% of management staff and all the company’s executives.
“As we move closer to announcing mandatory vaccinations for all employees, we need you to go first – to lead by example and show our employees how important getting vaccinated is,” Boom told managers.
He said that managers have until April 15 to receive at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
“If not, we will follow HR policy on non-compliance,” he added.
The FAQ sheet said that staff would lose their jobs if they didn’t get the jab, but that the hospital would allow religious and medical exemptions “in very rare cases.”
“We don’t know yet if a booster [shot] will be required annually but if it is, that will also be mandatory,” the hospital wrote in the FAQ sheet.
Boom said that managers would soon receive a list of all the employees they manage who haven’t yet received a dose of the vaccine.
Staff vaccine mandates are legal, and CEOs are eyeing them up
As the vaccine rollout ramps up across the US, with President Joe Biden eyeing May 1 as the day all US adults will become eligible for the shot, some employers are mulling making COVID-19 vaccines mandatory for staff.
Houston Methodist Hospital said it is legal for private companies under state and federal employment laws.
A new coronavirus variant has been linked to multiple outbreaks in Santa Clara County, located southeast of San Francisco. One of the outbreaks has led to at least 90 infections and one death at the Kaiser Permanente medical center in San Jose, public health officials said.
The variant known as L452R has been discovered in other states and countries, but is now spreading rapidly through California. It’s different than the B.1.1.7 variant, which was first found in the UK.
“The fact that this variant was identified in several large outbreaks in our county is a red flag and must be investigated further,” Santa Clara County Health Officer Dr. Sara Cody said in a statement. “This virus continues to mutate and adapt, and we cannot let down our guard.”
California is working with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, local public health departments, and laboratory sequencing partners to learn more about the variant and how it spreads, according to the joint statement from the California Department of Public Health, Santa Clara County, and the University of California San Francisco.
“It’s too soon to know if this variant will spread more rapidly than others, but it certainly reinforces the need for all Californians to wear masks and reduce mixing with people outside their immediate households to help slow the spread of the virus,” Dr. Erica Pan, state epidemiologist for the CDPH, said.
The statement said the variant was linked to the Kaiser Permanente outbreak, which resulted in the death of one staff member. County health officials have fined the medical center $43,000 for alleged delays in reporting cases, NBC reported. The facility denied the delay.
The cases are believed to be tied to an employee who wore an inflatable costume on Christmas to cheer patients up. The fan on the “air-powered costume” could have spread droplets to 77 staff members and 15 patients.
This variant has been found in several other counties, including Los Angeles and San Francisco, however, how prevalent it is across the state or country is not yet known since genomic sequencing is not done equally across the state.
An emergency-medicine doctor in Arizona said he was fired from his position at Yuma Regional Medical Center over posts he made on social media about the COVID-19 pandemic.
In viral tweets from November 22, Dr. Cleavon Gilman wrote that, when he arrived at work that day, he learned there were no available ICU beds left in Arizona. He also tagged Gov. Doug Ducey in the thread and asked, “what are you going to do?”
Gilman told Business Insider that the next day he was asked not to return to the hospital and that the staffing agency he works for told him it was due to his tweets.
“It’s just like a slap in the face,” he said. “America needs ER doctors, and here you have a champion for the people who is being side-lined when his services are needed on the front lines.”
Gilman, an Iraq War veteran, has been a very vocal figure throughout the pandemic. He has been featured in major news publications, including Business Insider, speaking about the experience of healthcare workers during this time.
After working in New York City during the initial COVID-19 surge last spring, he moved to Yuma, Arizona in the summer to work at the only hospital in the area. He said after he was dismissed, he never heard directly from anyone at the hospital about the decision.
“It’s an insult when you move your whole family to a place,” he said, “and you get a call one day that you can’t return back to work.”
Yuma Regional Medical Center did not respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.
Gilman said his tweets were not about the hospital, but about the surge in Arizona and what he describes as the war-like experiences frontline workers are currently facing amid the pandemic. He said his goal was to prompt change.
“My whole point is to target policy. We need to mandate masks, close indoor dining,” he said. “We need to take a hardline approach because cases are going up everyday in Arizona and the hospitals are at capacity.”
He also said the general public deserves to hear the truth directly from healthcare workers.
But doctors across the country are afraid to speak out about their experiences with COVID-19, Gilman said. He said many are being suppressed by their hospitals and are being silenced out of fear of retribution.
“We need to be protected as healthcare providers,” he said. “This cannot be the standard for which ER doctors are terminated.”
The American Academy of Emergency Medicine has been a proponent of increasing protections as well. The nonprofit association worked closely with lawmakers to introduce a bipartisan bill that would protect the due process rights of emergency physicians.
The bill is meant to provide protection to doctors who are not directly employed by the hospitals they are working at but by physician staffing companies, an increasingly common situation.
“Unfortunately, federal law has not been updated to reflect these changes in the industry and due process rights are not guaranteed to physicians who are not directly employed by the hospital,” Reps. Roger Marshall and Raul Ruiz, cosponsors of the bill, said in a statement earlier this year.
They said the legislation would protect ER physicians who are employed by a third-party contractor or company.
Gilman said, after what has happened to him, it is clear the bill is sorely needed for medical professionals across disciplines.
“I would advise all specialties to also try to pass similar legislation as well,” he said. “I can’t be an Iraq War veteran, ER doctor, on the frontlines of the pandemic where 3,000 people are dying a day, and getting fired over a tweet about ICU beds.”