California Regulators Gear Up for New Hospital Infection Control Effort
Starting in January, the California Department of Public Health will spearhead efforts aimed at preventing the spread of hospital-acquired infections, the Riverside Press-Enterprise reports (Hines, Riverside Press-Enterprise, 10/25).
The increased oversight comes through legislation signed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) last month that will require hospitals to:
- Develop patient safety plans and training procedures aimed at preventing infections;
- Report rates for the most serious infection outbreaks to the state; and
- Screen the patients with the highest risk for methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus or MRSA within 24 hours of their admission.
The legislation takes effect next year, and DPH will begin posting infection rates for individual hospitals online in 2011 (California Healthline, 9/26).
Debby Rogers, vice president of quality and emergency services for the California Hospital Association, said that CHA is working with state regulators to develop infection-control standards.Â Rogers said state regulators would encounter difficulties while they develop benchmarks and criteria to compare hospital infection rates.DPH spokesperson Ken August said that during hospital inspections the department will take into account compliance with infection control policies and procedures (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 10/25). This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.