SUNY-Downstate Medical Center

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SUNY-Downstate Medical Center

  • 450 Clarkson Avenue, Box 60
    Brooklyn, NY 11203-2098
  • N/A

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                  Danny M


                  Brooklyn, we have a problem:



                  2007 - Downstate professors notice that they have for decades overlooked blatant and widespread malpractice: excessive irradiation of neonatal gonads. These same doctors for decades have been paid as faculty to review these same x-rays with medical students, interns and residents in the course of teaching radiation safety and diagnostic radiology.

                  2009 - Downstate teaching hospital administrators and faculty are found to have overlooked routine abuse of adult patients:

                  2011 - New York Times readers see for themselves how obvious gonadal irradiation appears on poorly aimed chest X-rays:

                  The "highly trained, board certified Downstate radiology faculty" paid to read, report and supervise the quality of these x-ray films somehow woke up in 2007 and noticed this has been going on for decades. The radiologists wave a white flag, admit abject failure and receive compliments for their candor. They express compassion for the thousands of irradiated children.

                  Does anyone really think this is the only bad practice at Downstate medical center? Or is it more likely that its faculty Quality Assurance programs are dysfunctional at Kings County and the smaller Downstate teaching hospitals?

                  What happened to the radiologists paid salaries averaging $250,000 per year to supervise radiation safety and Quality Assurance? Was even one responsible physician re-trained, reprimanded or disciplined? Or do we just congratulate them for sincerity and hope they try harder?

                  Guess who pays their malpractice insurance premiums.

                  Mayor Bloomberg, The New York Times and the public have become aware of SUNY faculty practices in radiology, and Kings County Hospital's administration of its public waiting areas only because of incidental photography: medical X-ray films and security videotape.

                  Brooklyn should wonder what goes on behind Downstate's closed doors, in laboratories, clinics and operating rooms "supervised" by these same faculty and Department Chairmen, who in turn report to the Medical School Dean and University President. Medical Quality Assurance is centralized, supervised and controlled by physicians, Department Chairmen, the Dean and ultimately the President of SUNY Downstate, a physician.

                  These SUNY Downstate Medical School leaders each receive compensation in the range of $1,000,000 per year, competitive with compensation of Deans and Presidents at other medical schools. Where does the buck stop?

                  Dare anyone install more cameras at Downstate?

                  Opening the books on Downstate's malpractice settlements, subsidized by public funding, would shed more light on this persistent failure of medical school and hospital administration.

                  posted Mar 1st, 2011 1:42 pm

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