PartnershipPatients.300According to an article published by HealthLeaders Media, the American Hospital Association’s Hospital Engagement Network has prevented 69,000 hospital-caused complications and saved over $201 million in healthcare costs. The AHA’s network is the largest of 26 such coalitions participating in the $218 million HEN initiative funded by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and administered through the Partnership for Patients which has identified the following ten core patient safety issues as initial areas of focus for HEN:

  1. Adverse Drug Events
  2. Catheter-Associated Urinary Tract Infections
  3. Central Line Associated Blood Stream Infections
  4. Injuries from Falls and Immobility
  5. Obstetrical Adverse Events
  6. Pressure Ulcers
  7. Surgical Site Infections
  8. Venous Thromboembolism
  9. Ventilator-Associated Pneumonia
  10. Readmissions

Patrick Conway, MD, chief medical officer for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, described the HEN initiative as a “major driver” of recent work done to drastically reduce medical harm nationwide over the last two years.  Conway said that HEN participants have “decreased central line infections by more than 45%, decreased surgical site infections by more than 22%, and… early elective deliveries… by approximately 50%.”

Conway also explained that while 80 percent of the nation’s hospitals already are participating in HEN, 1,300 hospitals have yet to get on board which leaves a lot of opportunity for further improvement. Conway indicated several additional ways that quality leaders can maximize the impact that HEN can make on patient safety:

  • Report data for all 10 types of preventable harm.
  • Engage the C-Suite so you can broaden the scope of the program and focus on more types of harm.
  • Work beyond reducing harm and toward the sharing of best practices and elimination of disparities.
  • Engage patients and families because they often are able to bring hidden issues to the attention of clinicians.

To read the article, “Hospital Engagement Networks Lauded for Lessening Hospital HarmCost,” click here.