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HAP Launches Effort to Reduce Hospital Readmissions

December 15, 2016

HAP—through its Hospital Improvement Innovation Network and in partnership with The Health Care Improvement Foundation and Quality Insights Quality Innovation Network—has launched a three-year effort to reduce hospital readmissions.

The program, HAP’s HIIN Readmission Reduction Focus Group, will work with participating hospitals and health care organizations to reduce readmission rates by 12 percent. Efforts will target high risk diseases, including heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, pneumonia, acute myocardial infarction, sepsis, and oncology. Within the Readmission Reduction Focus Group, participating organizations also may choose to join collaboratives with a specific focus on:

  • Critical Access Hospitals
  • Palliative Care
  • Acute/Post-Acute Care Community Building

HAP has been selected as one of only 16 national, regional, or state hospital associations, Quality Improvement Organizations, and health system organizations to receive funding through the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Partnership for Patients program to reduce patient harm and readmissions.

Under the Affordable Care Act’s Readmission Reduction Program, which reduces Medicare payments to hospitals with excess readmissions, hospitals in Pennsylvania received $21 million less in payments in fiscal year 2015. Given the variations in readmissions rates, the diverse patient population needs, and the impact of the Readmissions Reduction Program, there remains a significant opportunity for hospitals to implement further interventions to reduce unnecessary readmissions.

Reducing hospital readmissions is one of 11 focus areas that HAP will target for quality and patient safety improvement. The other focus areas, which will kick off their work over the next few weeks, include:

  • Adverse drug event prevention
  • Falls prevention
  • Pressure ulcers prevention
  • Surgical-site infections prevention
  • Venous thromboembolism prevention
  • Healthcare-associated infections prevention
  • Antimicrobial stewardship, Clostridium difficile, multi-drug resistant organisms
  • Severe sepsis and septic shock
  • Diagnostic errors in the emergency department
  • Computed tomography (CT) radiation safety

There is still time for hospitals and health care organizations to join the HAP HIIN Readmission Reduction Focus Group. Please contact Sandra Abnett, HAP HIIN Readmissions project manager, to learn more. If you’d like to join or learn more about HAP’s other focus areas for improvement, please contact Lisa Lesko, director, HAP quality initiatives.

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