This week is National Patient Safety Week, and Louisiana has a lot to celebrate. Louisiana’s community hospitals recognize that providing safe and effective, quality-driven patient care is their greatest priority. Through initiatives like the Louisiana Hospital Association Research and Education Foundation’s Hospital Engagement Network (HEN), health-care providers and community hospitals have made tremendous advances in making patient care safer by implementing scientifically proven best practices.
Our hospitals are receiving education, training and resources through this initiative and other HENs in the state to continually improve health-care quality. Additionally, providing safer care not only benefits patients, but can also help hospitals run more efficiently and lower health-care costs.
One of the areas that hospitals are focusing on is reducing infections, like catheter-associated urinary-tract infections, surgical-site infections, central line-associated blood stream infections and ventilator-associated events.
The health-care community is also dedicated to delivering healthier babies. All birthing hospitals in the state have made great progress toward the goal of having a less-than-3-percent early elective delivery rate and/or have a hard-stop policy eliminating elective deliveries prior to 39 weeks gestation. Some hospitals that have already implemented this policy have seen as much as a 25 percent reduction in neonatal intensive care unit visits.
According to the National Patient Safety Foundation, “This is a week to recognize the advancements that have been made in the patient safety arena, while acknowledging the challenges that remain — and committing to work on them, every day.” Our hospitals are committed to providing Louisianians and their families the safest health-care experience possible. To learn more about all of our quality initiatives, visit http://www.lhaonline.org/quality.
John A. Matessino, president and CEO
Louisiana Hospital Association