HHS funds state efforts to reduce infections in ASCs

HHS has announced the start of funding for a national effort aimed at cutting down on infectious within stand-alone or same-day surgical centers (Sacs). The first program of this initiative, which is paid for by the stimulus law and administered by CMS, will begin within weeks.

While no one wants to see healthcare-associated infections blossom in any part of the system, this program is particularly important given the shift to ambulatory care across the entire healthcare system. As the HHS press release notes, ASCs account for 43 percent of all same-day surgery in the U.S., or about 15 million procedure every year.

States involved in the program--which include Maine, New Jersey, Maryland, Florida, North Carolina, Indiana, Michigan, Arkansas, Oregon, Utah, Wyoming and Kansas--will begin their efforts by surveying more than 125 ASCs before September 30 of this year, an effort which is expect to cost about $1 million.

In addition to the original funding for research, HHS will provide $9 million for expanded inspections. Then, the CDC will make $40 million available to state public health departments to create or expand local HAI prevention and surveillance, as well as beefing up public health staff trained to fight HAIs.

To learn more about the federal government's anti-HAI effort in ASCs:
- read this HHS press release 

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