We are just two of many citizens and patient advocates who remain concerned about the safety of our nation’s many outpatient clinics—and ambulatory surgery facilities, in particular. Perhaps, it is because trips to these type of healthcare settings resulted in the Hepatitis C virus for both of us.
Since the founding of HONOReform in 2007, there has been a migration of care from the hospital to the outpatient setting. Very few of us do not know someone who described their surgery or procedure, which appeared quite complicated, yet they were released the same day.
There is very little that we can do to help change this trend, which is largely guided by the wishes and demands of the insurance industry. But we are determined to do all we can—especially where injection safety is concerned, which is throughout virtually every aspect of the patient experience—to help protect patients in all settings, including the outpatient setting, which currently has very little regulation.
In today’s blog, we want to take some time to commend one of our partners. Sharon Bradley, RN CIC, of the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority. We value the leadership of Sharon and her colleagues. We are grateful for her reminder of the goals of CMS, which we include below.
Strategies to Fully Implement Infection Control Practices in Ambulatory Surgery Facilities
CMS has defined specific infection control process measures, consistent with nationally recognized guidelines, both in its ASC Conditions for Coverage7 and in its Infection Control Surveyor Worksheet.5Those strategies include the following:
• Implement surveillance techniques.
• Follow sterilization and disinfection standards.
• Integrate safe injection and point-of-care medical-device-use standards into clinical practice.
• Require standardized education and training requirements.
• Ensure strict environmental control practices.
In September 2013, Sharon and colleagues issued the following report, titled “Strategies to Fully Implement Infection Control Practices in Pennsylvania Ambulatory Surgical Facilities.”
We encourage you to share this information widely. Thanks again to Sharon and the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority for their leadership on this issue.