Ildar Sagdejev / Wikipedia Creative Commons

The North Carolina Highway Patrol is investigating a drag racing crash that killed four and left several injured in Johnston County Sunday night. Sergeant Michael Baker said there are many sanctioned drag strips in the state, but drag racing is illegal on public roads.

A picture of a baby held by a mother.
ODHD / Flickr

The WakeMed system opens its new Women's Hospital today. The system's fifth hospital adjoins two other main buildings on WakeMed's Raleigh campus.

The 61-bed women's hospital offers private delivery and bed rooms, lactation specialists, and postpartum care, says spokeswoman Debbie Laughery.

"And we know that comfort in a calming environment leads to healing. So, if we can bring the quality care together in a tranquil environment, we believe the outcomes will be better."

The women's hospital also offers general surgery, urology, gynecology and mammography services.

WakeMed CEO Donald Gintzig

After a controversial year, WakeMed Health and Hospitals' Donald Gintzig became permanent CEO last month. Gintzig is a retired Rear Admiral in the United States Navy with experience leading non-profit, faith-based and private health systems. 

A picture of an intravenous drip bag of saline.
Harmid / Wikipedia

Medical facilities are facing a national shortage of intravenous drugs, especially saline IV drips. Saline is used to treat dehydrated patients.

Manufacturers are stepping up production to meet need, but the shortage has presented problems to hospitals since December, when flu season began.

Zack Moore is an infectious disease epidemiologist with he North Carolina Division of Public Health. He said this is an especially bad time of year to have a limited saline supply for two reasons.

  The federal investigation into WakeMed over Medicare fraud looked like it was going to end in a settlement. But a federal judge twice rejected the agreement between the hospital and prosecutors, leaving the case unresolved. News & Observer reporter Joe Neff joins host Frank Stasio in the studio to discuss the case.

WakeMed Hospital has withdrawn its takeover bid of UNC-owned Rex Healthcare. The cross-town rivals are putting an end to their public battle that escalated when WakeMed issued an unsuccessful bid to buy Rex last year for 750 million dollars. The announcement comes after state lawmakers helped broker an agreement between the two institutions' officials. Bill Atkinson is the CEO of WakeMed.

A new emergency department is open in Raleigh. WakeMed's latest free-standing medical facility is in Brier Creek, near the Wake-Durham county line. WakeMed's Carolyn Knaup says they chose the location based on the area's rapid growth.

Carolyn Knaup: It's totally locally driven - i.e., when you need emergency care, you need it close to where you live or where you work. So, in doing our demographic assessment really felt like the Brier Creek area afforded lots of opportunity to be able to meet the need in that community.

Why UNC and WakeMed Both Want Rex

Jul 12, 2011
Rex Hospital

In May, the board of trustees of WakeMed Hospital in Raleigh made an offer to buy Rex Hospital from UNC Healthcare. UNC has owned Rex since 2000.

Try calling your local hospital to find the price of a procedure, or a surgery. You can’t find it, in part because everybody pays something different.

A proposal from WakeMed to buy Rex Healthcare from UNC is getting a chilly response. UNC president Thomas Ross said in a statement selling Rex Healthcare would be damaging to its core mission and not in the best interest of the people of North Carolina. He went on to say UNC Health Care's board of directors will discuss the proposal on Monday. WakeMed President and CEO Bill Atkinson says there are number of uncertainties over health care in Wake County.

WakeMed celebrated Mother's Day by kicking off a campaign to promote breast feeding. The hospital no longer gives out formula or pacifiers to new mothers. WakeMed Women and Children's Services Director Elizabeth Rice says breast feeding is healthier for both infants and mothers. But she says the hospital isn't taking away anyone's right to choose how they feed their baby.