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Penalties not lowering hospital-acquired infection rates

from Reuters via Physician's Weekly

A penalty program established to reduce infections and other complications in U.S. hospitals hasn't made these events less likely or reduced fatalities or repeat hospitalizations, a large study suggests. The program was created as part of the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare, to provide stronger incentives for hospitals to prevent infections and other illnesses that can make hospitalized patients sicker, researchers note in The BMJ. Among 708 hospitals penalized in fiscal 2015 for quality measures, an average of 2.72 patients per 1,000 got hospital-acquired conditions, compared with 2.06 patients per 1,000 at hospitals that were not penalized. more

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