Montana Public Radio

Kalispell Regional Healthcare

Hospital monitor.
Josh Burnham / Montana Public Radio

Montana’s rural critical access hospitals are struggling as COVID-19 patients fill beds and strain staffing resources. Larger hospitals are at times unable to take patients.

Health care worker holding a clipboard.
iStock

As COVID-19 cases across the state surge, the number of available hospital beds for COVID and other patients is quickly becoming a concern. But a shortage of health care workers to staff and watch over patients in those beds is already a problem in some areas of the state.

Hospital monitor.
Josh Burnham / Montana Public Radio

Kalispell Regional Healthcare is expected to acquire the Marias Medical Center and other facilities in the Shelby area. Toole County commissioners voted to accept a multi-million-dollar deal late last month.

St. Patrick Hospital in Missoula.
Courtesy St. Patrick Hospital

On Monday, Montana reported a total of 919 confirmed COVID-19 cases, including 56 new cases since Sunday. That’s the biggest one-day spike since the pandemic started in March.

This spike has prompted some hospitals to tighten visitor guidelines.

Kalispell Regional Medical Center.
Courtesy Kalispell Regional Medical Center.

Some hospitals and medical facilities in Montana are beginning to again provide elective surgeries and procedures.

Kalispell Regional Healthcare (KRH) started its phased-approach to providing in-person services Monday. KRH is starting with in-person medical services not requiring anesthesia at various locations.

An ambulance in front of Kalispell Regional Medical Center.
Eric Whitney / Montana Public Radio

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Flathead County reported Montana’s seventh coronavirus death on Monday, the same day the county’s largest hospital announced pay cuts for physicians and administrators along with temporary layoffs that will affect about 600 workers.

Kalispell Regional Medical Center.
Courtesy Kalispell Regional Medical Center.

Kalispell Regional Healthcare is facing a second lawsuit over its handling of a data breach last year of up to 130,000 patients' medical and financial information. Court documents allege the hospital was negligent in its cyber security practices and put patients at risk by not immediately alerting them about the breach. 

An ambulance in front of Kalispell Regional Medical Center.
Eric Whitney / Montana Public Radio

Kalispell Regional Healthcare is facing a potential class action lawsuit over a data breach of personal information impacting up to 130,000 people. The hospital announced the incident in October, two months after it discovered the breach. The lawsuit filed late last month argues victims are at increased risk of identity theft.

Kalispell Regional Medical Center.
Courtesy Kalispell Regional Medical Center.

Kalispell Regional Healthcare (KRH) was fined $65,000 this summer for failing to comply with training requirements outlined in an agreement with federal authorities. The agreement followed a $24 million settlement in 2018 that ended a lawsuit claiming the hospital violated anti-kickback laws.

Kalispell Regional Healthcare (KRH) announced Tuesday that an email data breach this summer may have exposed the personal and private healthcare information of nearly 130,000 of its patients.
(PD)

Kalispell Regional Healthcare (KRH) announced Tuesday that an email data breach this summer may have exposed the personal and private healthcare information of nearly 130,000 of its patients.

Information exchanged in emails with KRH staff such as names, addresses and some social security numbers as well as personal medical information could have been accessed as early as May 24.

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