HHS recently announced a plan for greater cooperation among federal agencies for surveillance and reporting of healthcare associated infections (HAI). Three HAIs—catheter-associated urinary tract infections, central-line blood stream infections and surgical-site infections—are on that list of 11 conditions for which Medicare will no longer pay beginning Oct. 1. The same infections, plus a fourth HAI, ventilator-associated pneumonia, compose the base of HHS’ action plan.
HHS has not released specific goals for the plan; a scheduled preliminary report is expected to be published in late October in the Federal Register. The outline of the plan calls for five working groups to be led by various HHS agencies that will develop initiatives in areas the department has targeted for stronger surveillance efforts. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will lead a group that creates a list of processes hospitals should follow to prevent certain infections.
(SOURCE: Modern Healthcare.com , http://modernhealthcare.com, September 29, 2008)