Hospital cooperation drops patient harm in half

Accreditation Insider, December 28, 2015

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The Florida Hospital Association (FHA) recently reported on the success of the largest hospital quality improvement project in Florida history.
  The project involved 75 Florida hospitals joining the FHA’s Hospital Engagement Network (HEN), a collaborative program aimed at reducing readmissions and improving patient care safety. The program ran from 2012-2014 and by its completion hospitals in the FHA HEN saw a 9.2% drop in readmissions and a 54% drop in patient harm.
Hospitals also witnessed:

•    $4.2 million in savings by preventing blood stream infections.
•    1,000 fewer patient falls with injury
•    4,650 fewer adverse drug effects
•    An 18% decrease in catheter-associated urinary tract infections
•    61% fewer pressure ulcers
•    97% fewer non-medically necessary infant deliveries before 39 weeks’ gestation

The reduced readmissions alone saved hospitals $138 million, with all the steps resulting in $169.7 million saved overall.  In its report, the FHA said that the HEN’s success was due to:

•    Providing training resources to healthcare staff. These included regular conference calls/webinars, statewide meetings, toolkits, on-demand learning, coaching and data sharing.
•    Access to state and national resources. The HEN allowed hospitals to work with healthcare experts nationwide on best practices.
•    Focusing on a culture of safety and increasing patient and family engagement.
•    Giving hospitals a tool to measure their overall harm scores.
•    Providing all the resources and support for free to participating hospitals.

Given the success of the 2012 HEN, the FHA has begun a HEN for 2016 with 77 hospitals signing onto the program in September 2015.

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