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Public Disclosure of Healthcare-Associated Infections: The Role of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America

  • Edward S. Wong (a1), Mark E. Rupp (a2), Leonard Mermel (a3), Trish M. Perl (a4), Suzanne Bradley (a5), Keith M. Ramsey (a6), Belinda Ostrowsky (a7), August J. Valenti (a8), John A. Jernigan (a9), Andreas Voss (a10) and Michael L. Tapper (a11)...


Prior to 2004, only two states, Pennsylvania and Illinois, had enacted legislation requiring healthcare facilities to collect nosocomial or healthcare-associated infection (HAI) data intended for public disclosure. In 2004, two additional states, Missouri and Florida, passed disclosure laws. Currently, several other states are considering similar legislation. In California, Senate Bill 1487 requiring hospitals to collect HAI data and report them to the Office of Statewide Health Planning was passed by the legislature, but was not signed into law by Governor Schwarzenegger, effectively vetoing it. The impetus for these laws is complex. Support comes from consumer advocates, who argue that the public has the right to be informed, and from others who view HAI as preventable and hope that public disclosure would provide an incentive to healthcare providers and institutions to improve their care.



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