Hos­pi­tals’ pa­tient-safety data sys­tems fall short, HHS says

Modern Healthcare - - Late News -

Billing data may not be a re­li­able source of hospi­tal ad­verse-event in­for­ma­tion and vol­un­tary hospi­tal in­ci­dent re­port­ing sys­tems may be an un­re­li­able source of in­for­ma­tion for pa­tient-safety or­ga­ni­za­tions, ac­cord­ing to Ad­verse Events in Hos­pi­tals:

Meth­ods for Iden­ti­fy­ing Events, a new re­port re­leased by the HHS in­spec­tor gen­eral’s of­fice. HHS re­searchers re­viewed a ran­dom sam­ple of 278 Medi­care ben­e­fi­ciary hos­pi­tal­iza­tions in acute-care hos­pi­tals in two uniden­ti­fied coun­ties that took place dur­ing one week in Au­gust 2008. The re­searchers found that hos­pi­tals did not pro­duce in­ter­nal in­ci­dent re­ports in 93% of 120 events where pa­tient harm occurred in the hospi­tal or as a re­sult of care. It was also found that di­ag­no­sis codes were ab­sent or in­ac­cu­rate in the billing data for seven of the 11 iden­ti­fied cases of hospi­tal-ac­quired con­di­tions. The CMS, ac­cord­ing to the re­port, re­sponded by in­di­cat­ing that it has es­tab­lished a process for pro­vid­ing cod­ing ad­vice to hos­pi­tals and that it will per­form its own study of cod­ing for hospi­tal-ac­quired con­di­tions.

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