The Institute of Medicine’s December 1999 report, “To Err Is Human,” put the entire healthcare community on high alert. It told us medical errors in hospitals account for between 48,000 and 98,000 deaths per year in the U.S.
The report prompted HCA to commit to creating a culture of patient safety throughout its hospitals. Thomas F. Frist, Jr., MD, HCA’s co-founder and former chairman, is fond of saying “putting patients first” is the secret of success in healthcare. This simple statement quickly became the foundation of HCA’s culture and passion for patient safety and led to the development of the following goals:
- Establish patient safety as a visible commitment to our “putting patients first” philosophy
- Move from blaming people to improving processes
- Improve use of technology to prevent and detect error
- Use data to identify and measure improvements
Using published evidence-based strategies known to prevent errors, the company began developing patient safety initiatives for implementation in each of its facilities. The company organized teams of clinical experts and healthcare managers from facilities around the country and charged them with finding solutions for ensuring patient safety. The efforts progressed rapidly through their collective knowledge and synergy. Patient safety solutions were tested in a few facilities and, once perfected, were rolled out to all HCA hospitals. Patients at HCA facilities are now benefiting from the evidence-based patient safety programs. HCA has implemented and continues to implement. The company and its hospitals are engaged now, more than ever, in creating solutions that make it easy to do things right and hard to do them wrong.
Third-Party Quality Monitoring Organizations
HCA East Florida supports the efforts of third-party quality monitoring organizations. The data collected by these organizations helps consumers identify hospital strengths and weaknesses and make informed choices when selecting healthcare facilities. Keep in mind that performance data is not a singular source of information for assessing the quality and services of hospitals.
HCA East Florida hospitals voluntarily report performance data and information to these organizations:
The Florida Agency for Health Care Administration introduced this website to help the public make well informed health care decisions. With accurate and trusted health care information and tools to compare health care providers and facilities, consumers can make informed choices.
IHI 5 Million Lives Campaign (http://www.ihi.org/engage/initiatives/completed/5MillionLivesCampaign/Pages/default.aspx)
The IHI 5 Million Lives Campaign is a voluntary initiative to protect patients from five million incidents of medical harm over the period of December 2006 – December 2008.
The Leapfrog Group (http://www.leapfroggroup.org/)
The Leapfrog Group is an initiative driven by organizations that buy healthcare who are working to initiate breakthrough improvements in the safety, quality and affordability of healthcare for Americans. Leapfrog helps consumers make smarter healthcare choices by showing you what steps hospitals are taking to reduce preventable medical mistakes.
The Joint Commission (http://www.jointcommission.org/)
Serves as the nation’s leading standards-setting and accrediting body in healthcare and focuses on improving the quality and safety of care provided by healthcare organizations. The Joint Commission’s Quality Check website provides comparison information consumers can use to determine whether a healthcare organization will meet their needs.
The National Quality Forum - NQF (http://www.qualityforum.org/Home.aspx)
The National Quality Forum (NQF) is a not-for-profit membership organization created to develop and implement a national strategy for healthcare quality measurement and reporting.