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Did the legal system fail you?

Started Nov 3, 2008

Tell us your story...
2 Replies

Started this discussion. Last reply by Patty Skolnik Dec 3, 2008.


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Welcome to Alicia Cole's Page.

I have to spread the word...

I'm a Hospital-acquired Infection Survivor trying to live up to my promise to save lives and improve the health care system!

On August 15, 2006, I entered Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center for routine surgery. I was scheduled to be home in two days. I have been an athlete all my life and was considered the picture of health. So I could never have imaged that I would spent the next month in the ICU and it would be two months total before I was able to leave the hospital.

During one of the evening dressing checks my mother noticed a black dot near my incision. She asks the nurse about it and was assured that it was “nothing”. However we had not seen that dot in the morning when Doctor Pearson came to check my incision. My mother asked the nurse to please call the doctor and ask him come back to the hospital to take a look at it. After many sighs and condescending remarks, the nurse agreed to “bother the doctor for what is going to turn out to be no big deal” when my mother said she would call him herself.

In the hour and a half it took my doctor to return to the hospital the tiny black dot on my stomach had turned into a quarter sized pustule! After waiting for the same nurse to answer HIS pressing on the call button, the doctor looked at my mother asked if she was squeamish and told her to put on gloves and a mask.

Right then and there the doctor and my mother proceeded to open up my incision, extend it out by about 2 inches on each side, and began to squeeze out pus and drainage. It was the most surreal moment of my life.

I had contracted a nosocomial surgical site infection. Nosocomial infections are those which are a result of treatment in a hospital, but secondary to the patient's original condition. Infections are considered nosocomial if they first appear 48 hours or more after hospital admission.

I had acquired NECROTIZING FASCIITIS or as it is commonly termed MAN-EATING FLESH DISEASE. The following weeks were a blur of painful tests, major drugs and multiple surgeries to cut the infection out of my body.

Health officials estimate that 2 million patients a year will acquire a nosocomial infection during their hospital stay. Of those patients, over 100,000 will DIE.

Ms. Magazine reports that as many as 90 percent of deaths from hospital infections could be prevented.

Unfortunately, a peaceful convalescence was not to be the case for me. The medical bills marked ‘Past Due’ began arriving even as I lay in the hospital attached to an IV with liquid food, antibiotics and a wound vacuum machine. My battle for proper follow-up care and medical supplies began immediately upon being sent home from the hospital. While still bed-ridden and healing from the six surgeries my parents and I were forced to begin a campaign of letters and calls fighting for help.

In total disbelief, we began sharing our experiences via emails and blogs to educate and help others.

As a natural progression, my parents and I started the Alliance for Safety Awareness for Patients (ASAP), a nonprofit organization designed to educate and protect patients through the awareness of hospital acquired infections.

Thank you for taking the time to look over our network. I hope you will find valuable information and connections here. I hope we can empower you with the confidence to be a proactive participant in the medical care for you and those you love.

May God Bless and keep you.

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Alicia Cole's Blog

Some states taking medical board cash

By Andis Robeznieks

Posted: February 24, 2012 - 1:15 pm ET…

Posted on February 24, 2012 at 9:22pm

Healthcare Worker Uniforms Carry Resistant Bacteria

Healthcare Worker Uniforms Carry Resistant Bacteria

a Majority of the Time, Study Shows

September 6, 2011

More than 60 percent…


Posted on September 6, 2011 at 2:50pm

Lack of Cleanliness Causes Serious Hospital Infections

by Dr. Betsy McCaughey

Missing from the recent News article on hospital infections was any mention of the single largest cause—lack of cleanliness. Bacteria are transmitted from patient to patient on the uncleaned hands of medical personnel and their inadequately cleaned equipment such as blood pressure cuffs, stethoscopes, bed rails and privacy curtains.

Recent studies confirm that the number one predictor of which hospital patients pick up the nasty drug-resistant germ… Continue

Posted on June 3, 2010 at 9:24pm

State Issues Fines To 7 Hospitals for Significant Lapses in Patient Safety

On Tuesday, the California Department of Public Health announced its latest round of fines, charging seven state hospitals for serious patient safety violations, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Under a 2006 state law, hospitals must notify state regulators of all significant patient injuries.

Prior to 2009, the state issued $25,000 fines for each violation. Starting in January 2009, the sanctions increased to $50,000 for a hospital's first violation, $75,000 for its second… Continue

Posted on April 15, 2010 at 10:12pm

C Difficile Surpasses MRSA as the Leading Cause of Nosocomial Infections in Community Hospitals

Emma Hitt, PhD

March 23, 2010 (Atlanta, Georgia) — Hospital-onset healthcare-facility-associated Clostridium difficile infections (CDI) have increased in incidence and have surpassed methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections, according to a new study of a large cohort of patients from community hospitals.

Becky A. Miller, MD, an infectious disease fellow from Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, presented the findings during an oral session… Continue

Posted on April 11, 2010 at 4:21pm

Comment Wall (9 comments)

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At 8:02am on May 12, 2012, Linda Garvin said…

Great to speak with you on the telephone.  Don't forget to send me your e-mail so we can correspond & let me know when you might be in the bay area.


At 4:04am on March 16, 2012, Doreen Mulman said…

I looked for a way to reorder the modules but, alas, found none. I'm pretty sure there used to be a way. I'll try again in a few days. (((HUGS))) Love U

At 2:00am on March 16, 2012, Doreen Mulman said…

Alicia, I'm having problems with my profile. It's no longer the way I had it, with my story at the top and everything else beneath it. "Recent Activity" is now at the top. Do I just see it this way because it's my page or does everyone see it this way? I can't figure out how to move my story back to the top. :\


At 8:06pm on May 18, 2010, Doreen Mulman gave Alicia Cole a gift
Alicia! Thank you for all you do! -Doreen
At 8:08pm on January 9, 2010, Tatiana A. Kostanian said…
Alicia Cole, Don't you dare step back one inch! I can understand you, your parent's outrage also. As patients, parent's individuals,communities, we must have expectations to make sure health care, surgery, physicians, nurses, hospitals, hear us loud and clear.I have yet to replace my catheter on my chest to a fistula and need 2 knee replacements. I've since changed physicians, hospitals since my horror story, (but paid a vey high price in my outcome). I will not go home to die, but fight every day till the last to make sure our voices, lives are not left out. I hope you, others will join our event I plan for late Spring, Summer. Want very much speakers, advocates,civilians, youth willing to participate and help our event and our Global Peace Center for Lives with Disabilities to live after my death. Too many times our lives, stories are read and well so sorry that happened to you, then peoples forget. As those directly affected, we must not forget but stand our ground.My health was not looked after,given wrong meds.I sustained a heart attack,ended up on dialysis for life!Please help me get my message out.Join me in any,with every ability you have. It will be a day of speakers, advocates, entertainers, musicians, etc. A civilian-youth day expressing how we see our needs addressed to those of 'we the peoples'. i am so glad you posted to me.I cant' go far but rely on others to help me connect with the world around me. I hope people will care enough to post and to help my projects live on. God Bless. tatiana 1/9/2010 -
At 12:16am on November 16, 2008, Nora Salisbury said…
Hi! I fixed up my page all pretty. I guess I could give it a try putting the magnet on the outside where it's meant to be, it's not like it's made of gold or anything that can be sold at a local recycling center LOL.
At 11:54pm on November 6, 2008, Nora Salisbury said…
Thanks for the welcome, Alicia, and also thanks for the magnet! I want to try to display it in my car, but I think I should tape it inside a window 'cause if I put it on the outside someone will probably take it.
Keep up the good fight!
At 7:51pm on November 5, 2008, Doreen Mulman said…
I've invited some folks. Looks like at least one (Pam K.) showed up so far. :) Have a nice evening, Warrior Queen!

-Warrior Princess!
At 7:09pm on November 4, 2008, Doreen Mulman said…
Thanks for the invite, this site is an excellent idea!

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