Monday, September 27, 2010

Joint Commission Annual Report Shows Big Improvements for Hospital Care

The Joint Commission released its annual report last week which showed great improvements in the quality of care being delivered to patients and significant progress in consistently using evidence-based treatments.

“It is very encouraging that this year’s report shows high rates of performance on these critical process measures and high levels of consistent excellence among hospitals on many measures,” said Mark R. Chassin, M.D., M.P.P., M.P.H., president, The Joint Commission. “Hospitals devote enormous resources and energy to using these performance measures to drive improvement in their clinical processes. This report demonstrates that these efforts are resulting in consistently improving patient care in America’s hospitals.”
Notable Improvements:
  • In 2002, hospitals achieved 81.8 percent composite performance on 957,000 opportunities to perform care processes related to accountability measures. In 2009, hospitals achieved 95.4 percent composite performance on 12.5 million opportunities – an improvement of 13.6 percentage points. 
  • Hospital performance on measures of quality relating to inpatient care for childhood asthma has increased dramatically in the two years since being introduced. The 2009 children’s asthma care result is 88.1 percent, up from 70.7 in 2007.
  • The 2009 pneumonia care result is 92.9 percent, up from 72.4 percent in 2002 – an improvement of 20.5 percentage points.
  • The surgical care result improved to 95.8 percent in 2009 from 77.4 percent in 2004.
Areas for Improvement:
  • Only 55.2 percent of hospitals achieved 90 percent compliance or better in providing fibrinolytic therapy within 30 minutes of arrival to heart attack patients. 
  • Only 67.5 percent of hospitals achieved 90 percent compliance or better in providing antibiotics to intensive care unit pneumonia patients within 24 hours of arrival.

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