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Hospitals to Receive Grants

December 05, 2007
Publish Date: 11/29/2007 Hospital receives grant to improve patients’ safety By John Fryar Longmont Times-Call DENVER — Longmont United Hospital is getting a $25,000 grant as part of a private foundation’s $3.9 million investment in programs to improve patient care and safety in Colorado hospitals. The Colorado Trust announced this week that it’s awarding grants averaging $40,000 to 45 Colorado hospitals that have agreed to participate in a national effort intended to reduce what the foundation called “incidents of medical harm” and medical errors. According to Laurel Petralia, a program officer for the Colorado Trust, other area hospitals getting grants include: Avista Adventist Hospital, Louisville, $50,000; Boulder Community Hospital, $50,000; the Estes Park Medical Center, $40,000; Exempla Good Samaritan Medical Center, Lafayette, $45,000; and Medical Center of the Rockies, Loveland, $50,000. Petralia said the grant amounts were based on the number of patient-safety intervention steps each medical facility has agreed to implement. Colorado Trust officials said the patient-safety and quality-care campaign will help hospitals adopt up to 12 intervention steps as part of a national goal of preventing 5 million incidents of medical harm in the coming two years. Interventions include: rapidly responding at the first sign of a patient’s decline; making sure patients get the right medications at every transfer point in their care; adhering to best practices known to prevent heart attacks and ventilator-associated pneumonia; and reducing infections and drug-resistant staph. The Colorado Trust is providing an additional $255,000 to help cover the costs of participating hospital staffs for attending learning and networking events during the campaign. The national patient-safety effort is being called the “5 Million Lives Campaign” and is being coordinated by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement. That institute reports that more than 40,000 incidents of medical harm occur in the country every day and medical errors are the fifth leading cause of death nationwide, the Colorado Trust said. The national institute’s campaign is intended to safeguard against such problems as hospital-acquired infections, adverse drug events, surgical errors and pressure ulcers. Other Colorado Trust grants being awarded in connection with this state’s part of the national campaign include: $535,000 to the Colorado Foundation for Medical Care to share knowledge and provide technical assistance support to hospitals; $120,000 to the Institute for Healthcare Improvement to support professional development for front-line hospital providers and hospitals’ quality-improvement directors; and $90,000 for the Colorado Hospital Association to work with hospitals’ executive officers and boards and provide professional development and leadership training. John Fryar can be reached at 303-684-5211 or jfryar@times-call.com.