Lessons from the Pioneers

Reporting Healthcare-Associated Infections

Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) account for 99,000 deaths per year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In an effort to curb the spread of HAIs, 27 states now require health care facilities to publicly report infection rates.

As state and federal policy-makers consider the merits and feasibility of this reporting, a report from the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) offers an in-depth look at the challenges of setting up meaningful reporting systems as well as successes and lessons learned from nine states which have implemented them. For example, giving hospitals time to adjust to reporting requirements and providing enough funding to carry out reporting initiatives can help them succeed, report authors say.

The report includes insights gained from interviews with state legislators, health care providers and other stakeholders in nine states: Alabama, Colorado, Delaware, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Washington.

Extending the Cure, a project of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Pioneer Portfolio, sponsored the report. Extending the Cure looks at policy responses to the growing problem of antibiotic resistance.