Affordable Care Act funding seeks to help health providers identify and spread local ideas to improve care, reduce preventable healthcare acquired conditions

The Dallas-Fort Worth Hospital Council Foundation, the Texas Center for Quality & Patient Safety Hospitals and Lifepoint Hospitals, Inc. are three of the 26 state, regional, national, or hospital system organizations selected as Hospital Engagement Networks by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).  As part of the Partnership for Patients initiative, a nationwide public-private collaboration to improve the quality, safety, and affordability of health care for all Americans, the selected entities will share in $218 million in funding to help find solutions already working to reduce healthcare acquired conditions, and work to spread them to other hospitals and health care providers across the country.

The 26 selected recipients announced by HHS December 15, 2011  are:

  • American Hospital Association;
  • Ascension Health;
  • Carolinas HealthCare System;
  • Catholic Healthcare West;
  • Dallas-Fort Worth Hospital Council Foundation;
  • Georgia Hospital Association Research and Education Foundation;
  • Healthcare Association of New York State;
  • Hospital & Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania;
  • Intermountain Healthcare;
  • Iowa Healthcare Collaborative;
  • Joint Commission Resources, Inc.;
  • Lifepoint Hospitals, Inc.;
  • Michigan Health & Hospital Association;
  • Minnesota Hospital Association;
  • National Public Health and Hospital Institute;
  • New Jersey Hospital Association;
  • Nevada Hospital Association;
  • North Carolina Hospital Association;
  • Ohio Children’s Hospital Solutions for Patient Safety;
  • Ohio Hospital Association;
  • Premier;
  • Tennessee Hospital Association;
  • Texas Center for Quality & Patient Safety;
  • UHC;
  • VHA; and
  • Washington State Hospital Association.

In announcing the awards today, HHS said the Hospital Engagement Networks’ will be funded with $500 million from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Innovation Center established by the Affordable Care Act. Hospital Engagement Networks will work to develop learning collaboratives for hospitals and provide a wide array of initiatives and activities to improve patient safety.  They will be required to conduct intensive training programs to teach and support hospitals in making patient care safer, provide technical assistance to hospitals so that hospitals can meet quality measurement goals, and set up and implement a system to track and monitor hospital progress in meeting quality improvement goals.  The activities of the Hospital Engagement Networks will be closely monitored by CMS to make sure that they are improving patient safety.

Launched in April 2011, the Partnership for Patients now consists of more than 6,500 partners, including over 3,167 hospitals, along with 2345 physicians, nurses, patient advocates, 892 consumers and consumer groups, and 256 employers and unions. In addition, health plans, Area Agencies on Aging, and state and federal government officials who have pledged to work together to cut the number of hospital-acquired conditions by 40 percent and cut hospital readmissions by 20 percent by the end of 2013.

According to HHS, achievement of the Partnership for Patients’ objectives would mean approximately 1.8 million fewer injuries to patients in the hospital and save more than 60,000 lives over three years.

HHS has committed up to $1 billion in Affordable Care Act funding to help achieve the Partnership for Patients.  In addition to the funding to help reduce health care acquired conditions, $500 million has been made available through the Community-Based Care Transitions Program to ensure patients safely transition between settings of care to bring down readmissions.  Recently, seven organizations were selected as the first participants for the Community-Based Care Transitions Program. 

In addition to the Hospital Engagement Contract awards, HHS has awarded three other contracts to help in achieving the Partnership for Patients’ goals: the National Content Developer Contractor, the Beneficiary and Medical Professional Engagement Contractor, and the Evaluation Contractor.

For more information on the Partnership for Patients, see here.

Project COPE: Coalition On Patient Empowerment & Coalition For Responsible Health Care Quality

Project COPE: Coalition on Patient Empowerment & the Coalition for Responsible Health Care Quality  are coalitions of individuals and organizations that share the belief that every American and American organization has a stake, and something to contribute to our ability to find and implement the best options for ensuring that the U.S. health care system provides quality, affordable health care.

Health care impacts every individual and every organization in America.  Consequently, every American citizen and organization including but not limited to health care providers, employers, insurer, and community organizations should take part.    The government, health care providers, insurers and community organizations can help by providing education and resources to make understanding and dealing with the realities of illness, disability or aging easier for a patient and their family, the affected employers and others. At the end of the day, however, caring for people requires the human touch.  Americans can best improve health care by not waiting for someone else to step up or speak up. 

Project COPE urges and invites each individual and organization speak up to help communicate and act to make health care work for themselves, their families and others when you can and share your input to help preserve and continue to develop real meaningful improvements to our health care system by joining Project COPE: Coalition for Patient Empowerment here by sharing ideas, tools and other solutions and other resources. 

Other Helpful Resources & Other Information

We hope that this information is useful to you.   If you found these updates of interest, you also be interested in one or more of the following other recent articles published on the Coalition for Responsible Health Care Reform electronic publication available here, our electronic Solutions Law Press Health Care Update publication available here, or our HR & Benefits Update electronic publication available here .  You also can access information about how you can arrange for training on “Building Your Family’s Health Care Toolkit,”  using the “PlayForLife” resources to organize low cost wellness programs in your workplace, school, church or other communities, and other process improvement, compliance and other training and other resources for health care providers, employers, health plans, community leaders and others here. If you or someone else you know would like to receive future updates about developments on these and other concerns, please be sure that we have your current contact information – including your preferred e-mail by creating or updating your profile here. You can access other recent updates and other informative publications and resources

For important information about this communication click here

©2011 Solutions Law Press.  All rights reserved.

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