Cardinal Health Awards $1 Million to Fund Patient Safety Initiatives

WASHINGTON, April 10 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- To support initiatives that enhance patient safety and quality of care, Cardinal Health announced today grants totaling $1 million for new and innovative programs at 34 hospitals, health systems and community health clinics across the country. This program is the largest and first of its kind given by a health care company.

The awards were announced today by Cardinal Health Chairman and CEO R. Kerry Clark at a briefing at the National Press Club on Quality as a Path to Improving the Cost of Health Care in America.

Grants ranging from $5,000 to $50,000 will provide funding for programs that implement creative and replicable methods to improve the quality of patient care. Initiatives that received funding include a regional, collaborative program to reduce Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) in New Mexico, an initiative to create the largest national clinical outcomes database to define, measure and benchmark the highest standards of practice in anesthesiology and a hospital in New Jersey using pre-labeled and pre-filled insulin pens to reduce errors in insulin administration.

More than 10 percent (700 organizations) of the nation's hospitals applied for the grants. In choosing recipients, Cardinal Health looked for projects that respond to a clearly identified, high priority safety issue; collaborative programs; projects that apply new thinking and approaches to development of solutions; model programs that can be replicated at other organizations and demonstrable and sustainable measures to ensure that improvements last over time.

"I believe the health care industry can use quality improvements as a strategy to achieve lower costs and provide safer care for our citizens," said Clark. "Fixing health care is not a simple task, but we have it within our control to take simple steps that can have a dramatic effect."

According to the Institute of Medicine, medication mistakes injure more than 1.5 million patients each year, causing nearly 100,000 deaths and costing the health care industry more than $3.5 billion. The 34 grant recipients are tackling these and other quality issues to improve patient safety.

In addition to the corporate commitment to patient safety, the Cardinal Health Foundation has provided more than $10 million for significant health care initiatives since its inception in 2002. Many of these have a special focus on patient safety including:

About Cardinal Health

Headquartered in Dublin, Ohio, Cardinal Health, Inc. (NYSE: CAH) is an $87 billion, global company serving the health-care industry with products and services that help hospitals, physician offices and pharmacies reduce costs, improve safety, productivity and profitability, and deliver better care to patients. With a focus on making supply chains more efficient, reducing health care-associated infections and breaking the cycle of harmful medication errors, Cardinal Health develops market-leading technologies, including Alaris(R) IV pumps, Pyxis(R) automated dispensing systems, MedMined(TM) electronic infection surveillance service, VIASYS(R) respiratory care products and the CareFusion(TM) patient identification system. The company also manufactures medical and surgical products and is one of the largest distributors of pharmaceuticals and medical supplies worldwide. Ranked No. 19 on the Fortune 500, Cardinal Health employs more than 40,000 people on five continents. More information about the company may be found at www.cardinalhealth.com .

SOURCE Cardinal Health, Inc.

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