Kanakanak Hospital Pharmacy Complies with Medicare and Medicaid


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Kanakanak Hospital in Dillingham serves 28 Native Alaskan tribes in the Bristol Bay area. (Photo by Austin Fast / KDLG)

The Kanakanak Hospital pharmacy has qualified for Medicare Hospital participation, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

In September, CMS found in a survey that pharmaceutical practices at Kanakanak Hospital put patients at risk of injury and death. The investigation described serious medication errors, inconsistent drug labeling and incompetence of staff.

The hospital was at risk of losing Medicare and Medicaid funding, and he drew up a remedial plan. This plan provided for the hiring and training of pharmacy staff. CMS established in a recent follow-up investigation that the hospital met the Jan. 11 deadline to bring the pharmacy into compliance.

In a statement, Robert Clark, President and CEO of Bristol Bay Area Health Corporation, said: “I would like to thank everyone involved for their commitment and dedication to the improvement that has been required over the years. weeks to ensure we make the necessary improvements to pharmacy services. which will allow us to continue to provide safe pharmaceutical care services to people in our region. Compliance is a daily and ongoing endeavor for all of us as we strive to provide quality healthcare with competence, compassion and sensitivity. “

In November, the Curyung Tribal Council in Dillingham called a special meeting of the BBAHC board of directors, and five other tribes signed the petition.

The meeting did not take place because the petition was not signed by the majority of the 28 Native Alaskan tribes that authorize the BBAHC to provide health services to their members. BBAHC board chairman Mark Angasan criticized the petition in a November 15 letter he sent to board members.

“I urge you to help society avoid this costly step,” Angasan said. “You wouldn’t have all the information about the CMS audit if we had a board meeting now, during the holidays. The annual meeting is scheduled for early March, and I encourage you to wait to hear the full story then.

The Curyung Tribe also passed a resolution at their annual tribal meeting in November, urging the BBAHC board to fire key trustees and allowing the tribal council to leave the BBAHC and work with the Indian Health Service to authorize another tribal health organization to provide health care for tribal membership.

Curyung and two other tribes who signed the petition, New Stuyahok and Togiak, declined to comment for this story.

Raymond Apokedak is Levelock’s representative on the BBAHC board of directors and he signed the petition last fall. However, now that the pharmacy has been brought into compliance, he said his concerns have been allayed. Levelock no longer requests a special meeting.

He said the Curyung Tribal Council “took the plunge before clarifying all the facts. They put everyone in an uproar… They weren’t waiting for everything to go through the right channels at the hospital at the time.

The other two tribes who requested a special reunion, Clark’s Point and Portage Creek, did not respond to a request for comment.

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