HHS Unveils $1B Effort To Cut Medical Errors, Improve Patient Safety
On Tuesday, the Obama administration announced a $1 billion plan to reduce medical errors that involves a partnership with private insurers, business leaders, hospitals and patient advocates, the Los Angeles Times reports.
The two main goals of the initiative are to reduce preventable injuries by 40% and cut hospital readmissions by 20% by 2013 (Levey, Los Angeles Times, 4/13).
HHS said it would allocate up to $1 billion in funds from the federal health reform law to achieve the two goals. Half of the funds -- made available on Tuesday -- will be allocated through the Community-Based Care Transitions Program, while CMS' Innovation Center eventually will dedicate up to $500 million more for demonstration programs that seek to reduce hospital-acquired conditions (Reichard , CQ HealthBeat, 4/12).
While the initiative eventually will target all forms of patient injury, HHS has asked hospitals initially to focus on nine types of complications and medical errors, including:
- Adverse drug reactions,
- Childbirth complications,
- Bed sores; and
- Surgical site infections (Reichard , CQ HealthBeat, 4/12).
According to HHS, 500 hospitals, more than 30 employer groups and several major physicians groups already have committed to participating in the initiative (McCarthy, National Journal, 4/12).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.