Analysis finds hospital-acquired conditions declined by nearly one million

New data released January 29 by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) show reductions in hospital-acquired conditions such as adverse drug events and healthcare-associated infections helped prevent 20,500 hospital deaths and save $7.7 billion in health care costs from 2014-2017.

AHRQ’s preliminary analysis estimates that hospital-acquired conditions were reduced by 910,000. The estimated rate of hospital-acquired conditions dropped 13 percent; from 99 per 1,000 acute care discharges to 86 per 1,000 during the time frame.

AHRQ’s new report quantifies trends for several hospital-acquired conditions, including adverse drug events, catheter-associated urinary tract infections, central-line associated bloodstream infections, Clostridioides difficile infections, pressure ulcers and surgical site infections.

CMS, through the Hospital Improvement Innovation Networks (HIINs), works to instill best practices in harm reduction to more than 4,000 of the nation’s acute care hospitals.

The HIINs regularly engage with hospitals and providers to quickly implement evidence-based practices in harm reduction to improve the quality of care for Medicare beneficiaries.

The DFW Hospital Council (DFWHC) Foundation’s own HIIN is part of a nationwide effort to reduce preventable hospital-acquired conditions and hospital readmissions. CMS awarded the Health Research and Education Trust (HRET) a two-year HIIN contract to continue efforts to reduce inpatient harm by 20 percent and readmissions by 12 percent.

If achieved by the end of 2019, AHRQ projects the reductions would result in 1.8 million fewer hospital-acquired conditions, potentially resulting in 53,000 fewer deaths and saving $19.1 billion in hospital costs.

For information on the DFWHC Foundation HIIN, please contact Patti Taylor at [email protected].