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Long Beach Hospitals Join Federal Initiative To Enhance Patient Care Quality

By Kendra Ablaza, Staff Writer

January 23, 2013 - Local hospitals have joined about 400 California hospitals in a federal initiative to improve their quality of patient care.

According to the California Hospital Association, the “Partnership for Patients” initiative, created by Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), requires that hospitals in its program achieve two quality improvement goals by the end of 2013. First, they must work to decrease injuries and infections that can spread during treatment by 40 percent compared to 2010. Second, they must reduce patient readmissions by 20 percent compared to 2010 by improving their aftercare.

“Every hospital is doing it different,” said Jan Emerson-Shea, California Hospital Association spokesperson.

CMS Innovation Center Director Rick Gilfillan said in a statement that the initiative helps California hospitals improve health outcomes and reduce complications for their patients.

“As hospitals in California and across the country work to improve their performance on patient safety, everyone – not just Medicare, Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance program beneficiaries – will benefit,” he said.

Participating hospitals include St. Mary’s Medical Center, Long Beach – VA HCS, Long Beach Memorial Medical Center, Miller Children’s Hospital, Pacific Hospital of Long Beach, Community Hospital Long Beach and MemorialCare's six hospitals in Los Angeles and Orange County, according to MemorialCare spokesperson Rhoda Weiss.