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North Shore hospital makes its infection rates available to public

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As reported in Health Data Management, North Shore-LIJ Health System has started publishing hospital-acquired infection rates at its 12 acute care hospitals serving New York City and Long Island.

Last month, New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation began voluntarily making public infection and death rates at its 11 hospitals. New York, where few hospitals are voluntarily reporting the performance data to the public, a law passed earlier this year requires that hospitals report rates of certain types of infection to the State Health Department, who is required to publish a “report card” for the public on individual hospitals

On its Web site,, North Shore is publishing three years of data on these infections: Ventilator-associated pneumonia; bloodstream infections caused by a catheter; methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus, or “staph” infection that patients may already have when they arrive; surgical site infections; and clostridium difficile, a bacteria that causes stomach discomfort.

North Shore will add additional quality data in coming months, including “near misses,” or errors that were prevented from reaching the patient. The delivery system also will publish patient satisfaction scores of its hospitals prior to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services publishing the data in March 2008.

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