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News

Cardinal Health funds major patient safety hospital programmes across the USA

Cardinal Health : 11 April, 2008  (Company News)
Cardinal Health has awarded grants totalling $1 million for new and innovative programmes at 34 US hospitals, health systems and community health clinics.
The grant awards are the first of its kind given by a health care company.

Cardinal Health’s chairman and chief executive officer R Kerry Clark announced the awards at a briefing at the National Press Club on Quality as a Path to Improving the Cost of Health Care in America.

Grants ranging from $5,000 to $50,000 will provide funding for programmes that implement creative and replicable methods to improve the quality of patient care. Initiatives that received funding include a regional, collaborative programme to reduce Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) in New Mexico, an initiative to create the largest national clinical outcomes database to define, measure and benchmark the highest standards of practice in anesthesiology and a hospital in New Jersey using pre-labeled and pre-filled insulin pens to reduce errors in insulin administration.

More than 10 percent (700 organizations) of US hospitals applied for the grants. In choosing recipients, Cardinal Health looked for projects that respond to a clearly identified, high priority safety issue; collaborative programmes; projects that apply new thinking and approaches to development of solutions; model programmes that can be replicated at other organizations and demonstrable and sustainable measures to ensure that improvements last over time.

“I believe the health care industry can use quality improvements as a strategy to achieve lower costs and provide safer care for our citizens,” said Clark. “Fixing health care is not a simple task, but we have it within our control to take simple steps that can have a dramatic effect.”

According to the Institute of Medicine, medication mistakes injure more than 1.5 million patients each year, causing nearly 100,000 deaths and costing the health care industry more than $3.5 billion. The 34 grant recipients are tackling these and other quality issues to improve patient safety.

In addition to the corporate commitment to patient safety, the Cardinal Health Foundation has provided more than $10 million for significant health care initiatives since its inception in 2002. Many of these have a special focus on Patient safety including:

* Serving as a lead sponsor for the Institute for Healthcare Improvement's 100,000 Lives and 5 Million Lives Campaigns.

* Funding important Patient safety initiatives in partnership with leading national and regional organizations, such as the National Quality Forum, the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists and the Maryland Patient safety Center.

* Development of a national poison prevention campaign focused on medication safety in partnership with SafeKids Worldwide.

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