Patient Safety and Professional Accountability

CMS wants to make Colorado the safest state in the country for patients to receive medical care. Two years ago we created the Ad Hoc Workgroup on Patient Safety and Professional Accountability. Comprising physicians from around the state and numerous specialties, and including legal experts and patient safety advocates from the consumer and hospital arenas, the workgroup has crafted a long-term strategy to achieve these ends:

Goal

To pursue as a high priority and as an important component of health care reform, the redesign of patient safety systems through approaches that unify all stakeholders in health care delivery and make Colorado the safest state in the nation in which to receive medical care.

Objectives

The workgroup is pursuing and supporting a number of initiatives to achieve these objectives. Highlights include:

IN 2010, CMS introduced a “Patient Safety Act” bill in the Colorado legislature to advance many of these concepts, including making it easier for patients to find out what happened after an adverse event and make changes to keep it from occurring again. While the bill was defeated, numerous legislators from both parties strongly supported our approach. And, one component of the bill – enabling health care facilities to share information about potentially dangerous employees – was subsequently added to another bill that passed resoundingly.

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