COLUMBUS, Ohio, April 12, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following is statement from Cathy Levine, Ohio Campaign for Better Care:
"Hospitals should heal people and put us on the road to recovery or to the very best health that is possible. But in our nation, including Ohio, patients are too often exposed to infection, endangered by poorly coordinated care, and discharged without adequate instructions or the follow-up services they need to get better and manage their conditions at home. For older patients with multiple health conditions, the risks associated with these problems are enormous.
Poor hospital care is a huge problem. Nationwide, some 1.7 million health care associated infections occur each year in hospitals. They lead to about 100,000 deaths. That's 100,000 people who go to a hospital to get well and, instead, lose their lives because they picked up an infection at the place that should have helped them heal. For every patient who dies, many more get sicker, are readmitted to a hospital or admitted to a nursing home when that could have been avoided. The family members and family caregivers of these patients suffer too.
They are people like Molly Glassman of Maryland, whose elderly mother became delirious when a problematic form of anesthesia was administered not once, but twice, and then suffered medication errors that diminished her forever. These are people like Nancy Oliver, of Ohio, whose father, five years ago, had successful heart surgery, only to die of a hospital-acquired MRSA infection.
For them, and for every Ohioan who may need hospital care some day, we are supporting the new federal 'Partnership for Patients,' unveiled in Washington, D.C. today. This new federal initiative is a welcome first step. But it is only a first step toward the hospital improvements we urgently need. We are launching our own 'Healthy Hospitals Initiative' to ensure that hospitals meet the goals of providing safer and better coordinated care, while lowering costs.
First, we will organize patients and families in Ohio to convince hospital leaders to sign onto these goals, and we will monitor their progress.
Second, we will be active partners in this effort: We will ask hospital leaders to work together with patients and families to improve the care they deliver. No hospital can truly achieve better care without directly involving patients and families in their efforts.
Finally, we will ask our elected leaders to help us with this work. Ohio is facing critical budget challenges. We need to use our Medicaid dollars wisely. Paying for bad care costs all of us more. We must use our health care dollars to ensure better, safer and more affordable care.
The Partnership for Patients' pledge is a first step. The Ohio Campaign for Better Care will continue this work until all of Ohio's hospitals are the safest in the country.
We are extremely pleased that a significant number of hospitals in Southwest Ohio have already signed onto the Partnership for Patients' pledge. This demonstrates the hospitals' commitment to better patient care at lower costs. The Ohio Campaign for Better Care is looking forward to working with these hospitals on better, safer care.
Ohio Campaign for Better Care plans to be at the table until all Ohio hospitals are part of a coordinated system of health care.
We will push for a system that gives every patient the right medicine in the right dose at the right time – and that helps doctors and nurses talk to each other and really listen to patients and their families.
We push for a system where care is coordinated between doctors, specialists, labs, and pharmacies.
We will push until no patient is sent home from the hospital confused about medications, and without the information and services that make recovery at home possible.
We will push until patients and their families have a real voice as hospitals set policies and priorities.
We will push until no lawmaker tries to reduce deficits by cutting Medicare and Medicaid in ways that harm patient care.
We will push until doctors and nurses can provide the quality care they want their patients to have.
We will push until every hospital is a healthy hospital. That work begins today."
SOURCE Ohio Campaign for Better Care