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AARC Pledges to Improve Patient Safety

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October 19, 2011

Partnership for Patients - Healthcare.gov. Proud to be Partners in Better Care at Lower Costs

The AARC has joined a growing list of stakeholders who pledge to meet two new overarching patient safety goals laid out by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to be met by the end of 2013.  These goals are to:

  • Decrease preventable hospital-acquired conditions by 40%.
  • Reduce preventable complications during the transition from one care setting to another so that hospital readmissions would be reduced by 20%.

Several thousand hospitals together with other care providers, patient advocacy groups, employers and health plans have taken the pledge. The initiative is called Partnership for Patients and it has identified nine areas of focus which include among other things, adverse drug events, surgical site infections, ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) and other hospital acquired conditions. The Partnership for Patients estimates that 50% of VAP cases are preventable. The goal set for hospitals is to reduce preventable cases of VAP by 50% by 2013. Over three years, this would prevent 17,500 cases of VAP.

While respiratory therapists are at the forefront of care for patients on ventilators and are well aware of preventable practices, we encourage you to check out the CMS website information on recent demonstration projects that have made significant progress in reducing VAP rates by a substantial amount.

You may also want to check whether your hospital or provider has signed on to the initiative. The page also provides advice on how you can help your hospital be successful in making care safer.

AARC has pledged to build on work already underway that achieves safe, high quality care.  We ask that you take the pledge with us to: 

  • Work to redesign activities across clinical settings to reduce harm, reduce preventable readmissions, and improve care transitions;
  • Engage with patients and families to implement practices that foster more patient-centered care that improves safety, communication and care coordination; and
  • Learn from and share with others your experience with making care safer and more coordinated.

In the end, we can all make a difference.