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Hospital quality initiatives enhancing patient care, panelists say

January 24, 2013

Hospitals are enhancing patient care through cutting-edge quality and safety initiatives, according to national and local quality experts participating in an AHA panel discussion today in Washington, D.C. For example, 100 neonatal intensive care units recently reduced newborn central line-associated bloodstream infections by 58% as part of an AHA Health Research & Educational Trust project funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, AHRQ Director Carolyn Clancy, M.D., announced at the event. Also participating on the panel, Jonathan Perlin, M.D., president of clinical services and chief medical officer for HCA, described how the Nashville-based health system reduced elective deliveries of newborns before 39 weeks of gestation. In addition, hospital leaders from Indiana and Arizona and HRET President Maulik Joshi shared strategies and tools hospitals are using to improve patient safety through HRET's Hospital Engagement Network. AHA President and CEO Rich Umbdenstock, who moderated the discussion, said through partnerships with federal agencies and others, "hospitals are cutting infection rates and minimizing risk to patients."