|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 25, 2008
NYC Health & Hospitals
Joint Commission, National Quality Forum Award
Patient Safety and Quality
Nation's Largest Public Hospital System Recognized for Healthcare Innovation by Making Performance Data Transparent to the Public
The New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) today was selected by the National Quality Forum (NQF) and The Joint Commission, the country’s leading healthcare quality and regulatory agencies, as the recipient of a national healthcare innovation award for creating a public website that makes its hospital performance data, including mortality and infection rates, accessible and transparent to all patients and consumers.
The city’s public hospital system will receive the
annual John M. Eisenberg Patient Safety and Quality Award for developing a
special website, HHC
in Focus (available on nyc.gov/hhc ) where the public can review how HHC and its 11 hospitals and 4 long term care facilities compare to state and national benchmarks on a number of important quality indicators. The section features graphs and charts that make it easy to track performance trends at various HHC facilities over time.
"We have set the ambitious goal of becoming one of the safest hospital systems in the country by 2010. By voluntarily posting quality and patient safety data that no other hospital system shares with the public, we demonstrate HHC’s willingness to be accountable for the care delivered throughout the system, and our commitment to foster a culture of continuous improvement," said HHC President Alan D. Aviles. "This recognition validates our work to date in quality, patient safety and transparency, and provides HHC’s 40,000 proud employees renewed inspiration to carry forward the spirit of Dr. Eisenberg’s distinguished legacy."
The HHC website tracks how often the system as a whole and individual hospitals are following best clinical practices in treating certain serious conditions like heart attacks and pneumonia, and how well HHC nursing homes are doing in reducing falls, bed sores and managing pain. The site also displays statistics that reflect the corporation's performance in helping patients better manage their asthma and diabetes; the number of life-saving screenings HHC provides each year for breast and colon cancer, HIV and deep vein thrombosis; how many flu shots were given; and how many people enroll in programs to quit smoking. HHC was the first hospital system in the state of New York to voluntarily disclose to the public detailed mortality and hospital-acquired infection information, not only for the entire system but also for each of its individual hospitals.
"Data displayed on this site demonstrate the effectiveness of the organization’s core investment in patient safety, best practices and quality improvement. The website is a bold advance because it provides high visibility to not only system-wide data, but to hospital-specific data as well," according to the Joint Commission, NQF announcement.
HHC is among six health care organizations or individuals from across the country that will receive the 2008 Eisenberg patient safety awards. "We applaud each of these recipients for their outstanding efforts which have advanced patient safety in the United States," says Mark R. Chassin, M.D., M.P.P., M.P.H. president, The Joint Commission. "By demonstrating a commitment to patient safety and the willingness to take the chances that innovations require, they have inspired the American health care community and improved the lives of patients."
"This year's Eisenberg winners are truly leaders in their field, and their work to increase patient safety is instrumental in moving U.S. health care toward a system of high-quality, safe care," says NQF President and CEO Janet Corrigan, Ph.D., M.B.A. "They inspire us to remember that patient safety should be the central focus of all health care."
This year’s awards will be presented on Thursday,
October 16, at NQF’s Annual Policy Conference: Quality at the Crossroads
in Arlington, Virginia. The December 2008 issue of The Joint
Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety will feature the achievements of each of the award recipients.
The patient safety awards program, launched in 2002 by NQF and The Joint Commission, honors John M. Eisenberg, M.D., M.B.A., former administrator of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). Dr. Eisenberg was one of the founding leaders of NQF and sat on its Board of Directors. In his roles both as AHRQ administrator and chair of the federal government’s Quality Inter-Agency Coordination Task Force, he was a passionate advocate for patient safety and health care quality and personally led AHRQ’s grant program to support patient safety research.