[Oct. 26, 2017] POMONA, Calif. – Patient infections spiked for the third year in a row at Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center, according to figures recently released by the federal government, and raise new questions about hospital executives’ failure to address the problem.
“These latest figures back up what we’ve been saying for a long time – there are too many infections here at the hospital and we’re not getting the support, like training and staffing, to take care of it,” said Lucy Hodges, a radiology technician at Pomona Valley Hospital. “It’s disturbing that hospital executives seem to lose focus of what’s most important, and that’s keeping patients and my co-workers safe and healthy.”
From Jan. 1, 2016 through Dec. 31, 2016, Pomona Valley Hospital reported 122 cases of patients acquiring Clostridium difficile (C. diff.), a contagious infection that causes severe diarrhea, fever and nausea. The figure is 30 percent higher than in 2015, when Pomona Valley Hospital reported 94 such infections, and 40 percent above 2014, when 87 cases were tallied.
Meanwhile, Chino Valley Medical Center – just seven miles away – reported only one C. diff. infection in 2016.
Pomona Valley Hospital workers have previously raised concerns with management regarding a systemic lack of training and staffing that they believe contributed to infections, and affect patient care and their own safety. One of the main reasons that workers voted for union representation in January 2016 was to address issues like training and staffing. More than 1,100 Pomona Valley Hospital employees are members of SEIU-United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW).