Catholic Health received no penalties in the recently released Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) 2022 hospital-acquired condition (HAC) reduction program. For Catholic Health, the value-based incentive program includes patient data from Mercy Hospital of Buffalo, Sisters of Charity Hospital, Kenmore Mercy Hospital and Mount St. Mary’s Hospital.
The HAC reduction program, which began in 2014, evaluates hospitals based on their rates of several avoidable complications, including bed sores, blood clots, central line infections, falls, and infections from methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) or clostridium difficile (C. diff). Every year, the facilities in the lowest-performing 25% are penalized by losing 1% of their Medicare payments.
“Patients shouldn’t have to worry about acquiring an infection or some other avoidable complication when they are hospitalized,” said Hans Cassagnol, M.D., M.M.M., Catholic Health’s executive vice president and chief physician executive, who leads the health system’s quality and patient safety program. “Every day, our caregivers follow stringent protocols to provide safe, high-quality care, and we thank them for their tremendous efforts, which resulted in no HAC penalties to our hospitals.”
Catholic Health noted, “This year, 764 U.S. hospitals will have their Medicare payment rates reduced for having high infection rates and other patient complications from mid-2018 through 2019. All data from 2020 was excluded from this year’s HAC program calculations due to the COVID-19 public health emergency.”
Cassagnol noted, “Our attention to quality and patient safety, reflected through our performance in the HAC reduction program, speaks volumes about the care provided in our hospitals. It should be what every patient looks for when choosing a hospital for their medical, surgical or emergency care.”