The following e-mail was received from an employee st San Bernardino County-owned and operated Arrowhead Regional Medical Center (ARMC). InlandPolitics would like to reiterate to our readers that the the lack of concern for quality of patient care is alarming and of most concern to us here. Tags for the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the California Department of Justice have been attached to this story to allow the agencies to flag the post. InlandPolitics has learned Special Agents for the California Department of Justice have been questioning employees connected to the facility.
Date: Fri, 28 May 2010 08:28:46 -0700
To: <GnanadevD@armc.sbcounty.gov>; <email@example.com>
Subject: Waste, Fraud and Scandal at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center
Arrowhead Regional Medical Center has been my home for over 10 years as a county employee and I am sick seeing it run into the ground first hand. The waste to the taxpayers is extraordinary and the tolerance for incompetence among the medical staff is unbelievable.
To be specific, the emergency department continues to contract with doctors that are surrounded by lawsuits and a desire to spend our tax dollars to inflate their sense of self-importance and fatten their paychecks.
One of the doctors I work with, Dr. Troy Ward Pennington, has four malpractice suits against him currently and I can see why. Just the other night he subjected a poor patient to two cat scans and an MRI all of the same body part, all of which were normal and after another specialist told him that further tests were unnecessary. This was done to satisfy Dr. Pennington’s ego and to find “some reason to admit this patient” and not for patient care. The patient was concerned about paying for the ER visit in the first place and this degree of waste and callousness is typical for this doctor and many of the ER doctors here. The patient was sent home with no diagnosis and a large bill. The fraud in billing this Medicare patient for tests that were clearly not warranted should not be tolerated, and I have already filed a medicare fraud report against this doctor in the past.
Since the doctors collect a portion of what they bill this happens routinely in order to generate higher fees. I will be quitting my job at Arrowhead soon out of frustration and an unwillingness to be a part of a large corrupt machine that the doctors and administrators seem to not think needs fixing. We depend on institutions like this to be there for us in our time of need and not take advantage of us when we are most vulnerable.