Feds offer $40M in stimulus funds to fight healthcare-associated infections

The federal government has set aside $40 million in stimulus funds to help hospitals fight healthcare-associated infections, part of a larger government and industry push to eliminate these costly, and sometimes deadly, complications.

The CDC estimates that patients contract 1.7 million infections each year in hospitals, which are associated with about 99,000 deaths per year. Prevention of HAIs continues to be a healthcare industry priority, with many private efforts particularly focused on avoiding needless infections that occur due to gaps in care. While many approaches to HAI prevention have been attempted, including "bundles" of procedures known to fight infections and collaborative efforts emphasizing information sharing, HAIs remain a major problem.

This package of money will be distributed through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The funds will be used to establish or expand state and local efforts to reduce HAIs; increase use of disease surveillance systems that track HAIs; and hire and train public health workers who can promote HAI prevention efforts.

To learn more about these efforts:
- read this UPI piece