One in 25 Americans who are hospitalized will end up getting hospital acquired infections during their stay [CDC]. Now the government is penalizing hospitals with high infection rates in an effort to reduce those odds. The program aims to reduce these rates by withholding 1% of the Medicare funding of the hospitals with the highest infection rates.
It appears no hospital is immune—big or small. Hospitals from Southwest Florida were found to be penalized for “hospital acquired conditions.” Some of the larger and most well-known hospitals in the country are found on the penalty list: George Washington University Hospital in Washington D.C., Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, The Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, and even the Yale-New Haven Hospital.
This is part of a CDC ‘get tough’ approach; saying over 700,000 individuals develop hospital infections each year. Of this number, around 70,000 will die while in the hospital, according to the CDC.
While most infections are accidental and relatively harmless, some can become life-threatening. They cause death, require life-saving procedures, additional hospitalization, and additional health care costs. On top of this, there is a psychological impact, time away from loved ones, possible employment consequences, etc.
Originally published 7/29/15 http://www.personalinjuryinfortmyers.com/hospital-acquired-infections-on-the-rise/