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(AUSTIN, Texas – March 12, 2019) Simplifying and aligning reporting requirements for health care-associated infections to promote Texas hospitals’ ongoing work to improve care quality is the focus of a bill that will be heard today in the Texas Senate Health & Human Services Committee, chaired by Sen. Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham). Kenneth Mitchell, M.D., chief medical officer, St. David’s HealthCare in Austin, will testify in support of Senate Bill 384, by Sen. Jane Nelson (R-Flower Mound), which would align state and federal reporting requirements for HAIs and enable hospitals to focus on controlling and preventing the spread of infections.
“For too long, Texas hospitals have had to report different data on HAIs to the state and federal governments,” said Robert Hendler, M.D., chief medical officer at the Texas Hospital Association. “Simplifying and aligning reporting would give hospitals access to infection data that are most useful for protecting patients, their families and health care workers. It also would allow hospitals more time and resources to focus on what matters – eliminating HAIs and improving infection control and prevention efforts.”
Since 2008, Texas hospitals have reported to the state data on infections that occurred while a patient received medical treatment. The federal government subsequently required HAI reporting for hospitals in 2011.
State reporting requirements have not changed since the state law authorizing HAI reporting passed more than a decade ago. Federal reporting requirements, however, routinely are updated and revised based on the relevance of the infection to protecting and improving patient care.
Founded in 1930, the Texas Hospital Association is the leadership organization and principal advocate for the state’s hospitals and health care systems. Based in Austin, THA enhances its members’ abilities to improve accessibility, quality and cost-effectiveness of health care for all Texans. One of the largest hospital associations in the country, THA represents 452 of the state’s non-federal general and specialty hospitals and health care systems, which employ some 400,000 health care professionals statewide. Learn more about THA at www.tha.org or follow THA on Twitter at http://twitter.com/texashospitals.