Health care

Death rate high for heart attack victims at VCU

A study by the government’s Center for Medicare and Medicaid did a survey of 4,200 hospitals nationwide. The study showed that VCU Medical Center had 19.8 percent death rate for people who are admitted with heart attacks

Dominion Resources gives $1 million to free clinics

Dominion Resources gave more than $1 million to local free health clinics at a ceremony at Fan Free Clinic Tuesday. And the timing is right — patient volume at the free clinics in Richmond is up 25 percent compared to last year, on account of the economy.

Prognosis good for Richmond hospitals

Both non profit hospitals in Richmond are still very much operating in the black, but large investment losses are dragging down their financial performance, and that could clog the pipeline for new buildings and potentially increase the cost of borrowing in the future. And both say more patients are postponing certain care and having more trouble paying.

VCU Medical Center already paperless

VCU Medical Center has gone almost completely paperless, putting the local hospital at the fore of a federal push to digitize records.

BioTech park lands British firm

A British firm that has come up with a product to kill high-powered bacteria has become the 56th company in the Virginia BioTechnology Research Park in downtown Richmond. Biocontrol Ltd.  of London opened an office in an existing building in the park and will operate as a U.S. based affiliate under the name Biocontrol International… Read more »

HandCraft opens hospital linen plant

Last week local launderer HandCraft opened a 60,000 square foot facility dedicated to hospital linen. The company poured $9.6 million into the building, which is on Cofer Road in Richmond’s South Side. Construction started in March of 2007 after a lengthy closing process.

Former Anthem exec sues health insurer

A former medical director at Anthem has filed a lawsuit alleging the company forced him to leave in July of 2006 after he exposed a cozy relationship with a drug company. Dr. Randy Axelrod, 51, who was a vice president in charge of health care management for Anthem’s parent, WellPoint, claims that he was dismissed… Read more »

Richmond doc wants to create a database for surgeries

Dr. William Jiranek has for years tried unsuccessfully to set up a state-wide database that tracks patients who receive joint replacements. Jiranek, who works in the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at the VCU Medical Center, said that so far only six of an estimated 200 doctors doing joint replacement in Virginia are participating.