HHS reports O-Care cut into hospital deaths

The Obama administration on Wednesday claimed the new healthcare law helped cut the number of deaths in hospitals by 15,000 in 2012.

Data from the Department of Health and Human Services also found about $4 billion in savings compared to the previous year.

ADVERTISEMENT
The report credited public-private partnerships launched by the new law with leading to a significant drop in adverse drug events, falls, infections, and other forms of hospital-induced harm.

“These improvements reflect policies and an unprecedented public-private collaboration made possible by the Affordable Care Act,” says HHS. “The data demonstrates that hospitals and providers across the country are achieving reductions in hospital-induced harm experienced by patients.”

The data found there were 560,000 fewer hospital injuries in 2011 and 2012 compared to 2010.

The report also found while 30-day Medicare hospital readmission held at a steady 19 percent between 2007 and 2011 that number dropped to 17.5 percent by 2013. According to HHS that meant 150,000 fewer hospital readmissions among Medicare beneficiaries between January 2012 and December 2013.

House Energy and Commerce Committee ranking member Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) jumped on the report as a sign the ACA was working.

“The HHS patient safety report released today provides conclusive evidence that the Affordable Care Act is improving health outcomes across the country," he said. “This report is the latest in a series of evidence that the Affordable Care Act is good for the nation.”

— This article was updated at 2:34 pm.