carolinas-healthcareThe Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently announced $347 million in awards to 16 national, regional or state hospital associations, Quality Improvement Organizations and health system organizations to continue efforts in reducing hospital-acquired conditions and readmissions in the Medicare program. Carolinas Healthcare System was one of the 16 to receive a contract and the only recipient in North Carolina.
Those selected will serve as a Hospital Improvement and Innovation Network to continue patient safety improvement efforts started in 2011 under the Partnership for Patients initiative.
New, ambitious goals have been set for the Networks. Through 2019, they are charged with achieving a 20 percent decrease in overall patient harm and a 12 percent reduction in 30-day hospital readmissions as a population-based measure (readmissions per 1,000 people) from the 2014 baseline.
Expanding the focus for the Hospital Improvement and Innovation Networks to include a reduction in all-cause patient harm supports the development of an overall culture of safety in the nation’s hospitals by creating an environment that supports a high quality, patient-centered approach to care delivery.
The Networks will also work to expand and develop learning collaboratives for hospitals and provide a wide array of initiatives and activities to improve patient safety in the Medicare program. They will be required to address a wide variety of topics, including:

  • Adverse drug events (to focus on at least the following three medication categories: opioids, anticoagulants, and hypoglycemic agents)
  • Central line-associated blood stream infections (in all hospital settings)
  • Catheter-associated urinary tract infections (in all hospital settings)
  • Clostridium difficile infection (including antibiotic stewardship)
  • Injury from falls and immobility
  • Pressure Ulcers
  • Sepsis and Septic Shock
  • Surgical Site Infections (for multiple classes of surgeries)
  • Venous thromboembolism (at a minimum in all surgical settings)
  • Ventilator-Associated Events
  • Readmissions

More information on this announcement is available here.