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Hospitals Take Flight Lessons from Pilots to Avoid Government Penalties
Date:5/5/2013

Collierville, TN (PRWEB) May 05, 2013

In 2013, government regulators will penalize 1,427 U.S. hospitals because too many of their patients are re-admitted to the hospital for follow-on care. The New York Tmes reports that Medicare, which monitors hospitals’ compliance with the new rules, says nearly two-thirds of hospitals receiving traditional Medicare payments are expected to pay penalties totaling about $300 million in 2013 because too many of their patients were readmitted within 30 days of discharge. For hospitals with lots of Medicare patients, hundreds of thousands of dollars are at stake, money that could be spent on safety and quality. In all, the Medicare penalties tie almost $1 billion in payments to hospitals to the quality of care provided to patients as measured by readmission rates.

To avoid these penalties, hospitals are taking lessons from aviation on how to improve doctor-patient communications to prevent mistakes leading to unnecessary readmissions.

Beyond the penalties imposed by Medicare, hospitals waste almost $73 billion a year simply because patients do not understand what physicians and nurses are saying to them. Hospitals believe that if these communication breakdowns could be fixed, it would dramatically improve readmission problems. Health care facilities are turning to LifeWings, an aviation–based patient safety training company, to teach their physicians and nurses to stop these communication errors.

The LifeWings training is based on 7 low cost, or no cost, simple things that can be done to improve readmission issues:'/>"/>

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