Washington state governor, Christine Gregoire, has proposed legislation mandating hospital reporting of all adverse events. From the Seattle Post Intelligencer:
[…] Gregoire said she expects full public access to hospitals’ track
records to be done without extra cost to the state treasury. She said
she will introduce legislation giving consumers information about
“adverse events,” such as infections or patient deaths, at each
hospital.”With full disclosure, the health care system can
learn from its mistakes and prevent new ones,” Gregoire said in a
policy paper released by her office.
Such reporting could motivate hospitals to undertake difficult cultural changes and invest in products that will improve patient safety. The best run hospitals, with the appropriate technologies, could better compete with hospitals in their markets if prospective patients knew hospitals’ adverse event track records.
I’ve mentioned before (here, here and here for 3 recent examples) how transparency pressures will shine a bright light on adverse events through increased reporting. This won’t be an easy transition, but the industry will be better for it. I mean we’re here to save lives, right?