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Hospitals Won't Bill Never Events

September 26, 2007
by root
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Fifty two percent of hospitals that responded to the Washington-based Leapfrog Hospital "Quality and Safety Survey" — a national hospital quality rating tool — indicated they have adopted the Leapfrog Never Events policy, a list of actions they pledge to take whenever a "never event" — a rare medical error that should never happen to a patient — occurs.

According to the survey, hospitals pledged to:

  • Apologize to the patient and/or family affected by the never event
  • Report the event to at least one of the following agencies: the Joint Commission (Oakbrook Terrace, Ill.), a state reporting program for medical errors
  • Perform a root cause analysis, consistent with instructions from the chosen reporting agency
  • Waive all costs directly related to the serious reportable adverse event

The following percentages of hospitals responded that they agree to the policy:

  • 59 percent of small hospitals (1-100 beds)
  • 53 percent of medium hospitals (101-250 beds)
  • 48 percent of large hospitals (251+ beds)
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