FOR RELEASE: 1/5/2012Contact: John Cappiello, (203) 384-3637

Senator Blumenthal discusses patient care improvements, renovations, national drug shortages during visit to Bridgeport Hospital

Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) met on Jan. 5 with doctors, administrators and other employees of Bridgeport Hospital as he continued a series of hospital visits around the state to draw attention to improvements in patient care quality and the national shortages of drugs used in patient care.

Hospital leaders echoed Blumenthal’s concerns that drug shortages often force healthcare providers to seek alternate medications that might be less effective and more costly.

President and CEO William M. Jennings told Blumenthal that the hospital is proud that it has the lowest rate of adverse events of any hospital in Connecticut, according to the Department of Public Health’s latest annual report to the state legislature. Jennings added that the hospital has worked hard to ensure the delivery of safe patient care.

“Bridgeport Hospital is a great resource to have,” Blumenthal said to hospital officials. “I appreciate all the great work you’re doing in patient care quality and safety.”

During his visit, Blumenthal also toured The Connecticut Burn Center at the hospital, the state’s only dedicated burn care facility, which is undergoing its first major renovation since the late 1990s. The $1.5 million project includes a new suite providing overnight accommodations for families of burn patients, redesigned patient rooms for greater patient and family comfort and privacy, and a dedicated elevator to transport burn patients to and from the operating room. Work is expected to be completed later this year.

Blumenthal then visited the hospital’s Emergency Department, which itself has undergone a major upgrade during the past five years, including a new lobby and waiting rooms, new examination and treatment areas and a new department-based CT scanner to expedite patient diagnoses.

“We at Bridgeport Hospital appreciate Senator Blumenthal’s concern for patients and those who care for them,” said Jennings. We are especially proud of his recognition of the significant improvements in quality and safety here at Bridgeport Hospital.”

“Hospitals face ongoing challenges as a result of national healthcare reform and it is important to maintain a productive dialog with our government officials about the issues,” Jennings added. “We must continue to work together to ensure the high quality and affordability of patient care.”

A member of the Yale New Haven Health System, the 425-bed Bridgeport Hospital serves more than 19,000 inpatients and receives 210,000 outpatient visits annually, including more than 75,000 Emergency Department visits. The hospital has 2,500 employees and an attending medical staff of nearly 600 physicians, representing more than 60 specialties and subspecialties.

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Part of Yale New Haven Health System, Bridgeport Hospital is a 383-bed acute care hospital (plus 42 beds licensed to Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital) serving parts of Fairfield and New Haven counties. The hospital admits more than 18,000 patients and receives more than 240,000 outpatient visits annually.