42. Hospitals Can Make You Sick

About 100,000 people die each year in US from infections that they get while they are the hospital. Less than half that many die US highways. The hospital deaths are due to housekeeping and poor hygiene. Floors, walls, and doors not cleaned regularly or thoroughly. Room dividers are never cleaned. The carts that carry food trays, the trays themselves, are usually contaminated from handling coughing. Cooks and other food handlers can easily the food by not washing properly after using bathroom.

Doctors and nurses are just as guilty other staff. Doctors rarely clean their stethoscopes after patient. Nurses apply blood pressure cuffs to patient patient without cleaning the cuffs. Doctors often put gloves without washing their hands first. As a , the germs on their hands are transferred to outside of the gloves.

Consumer groups warn patients they must demand cleanliness. If they see or unsanitary conditions, they must tell someone immediately. It be a matter of life or death. But, one patient said, "No way! You don't tell boss that he has bad breath, and you 't tell your doctor that he needs to wash hands."