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Saving Lives and Saving Money: Hospital-Acquired Conditions Update.

Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; December 2015. AHRQ Publication No. 16-0009-EF.

The Partnership for Patients initiative has led efforts to reduce hospital-acquired conditions (HACs), such as health care–associated infections and other never events. Since 2010, AHRQ has been tracking rates of HACs including adverse drug events, catheter-associated urinary tract infections, central line–associated bloodstream infections, pressure ulcers, and surgical site infections. This interim update demonstrates that HACs were reduced by 17% in 2014, indicating that the previously reported decline has been sustained. With this decrease in HACs, the analysis estimates that 87,000 fewer hospital patients died and $19.8 billion in health care costs were saved from 2011 to 2014. Although HACs persist despite incentives and strategies to eliminate them, these reductions indicate that hospitals have made substantial progress in improving safety.