The most important thing a hospital can do is save a patient's life.
Although it is impossible to eliminate all risks of death and
complications, especially for seriously ill patients, risks can be
reduced by choosing a hospital with a lower mortality rate and/or a
higher long-term survival or success rate. Stanford Health Care has
initiated several programs to increase the survival rate for patients.
Promoting hand hygiene
Hospital-acquired infections account for approximately 80,000 deaths
in the U.S. each year. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research
and Quality (AHRQ), 7-10% of all hospitalized patients experience a
hospital acquired infection. While it may sound simple, basic hand
washing is the single most effective method to reduce the spread of
common infections, especially in a hospital setting. Unfortunately,
AHRQ has found that most hospitals have a poor compliance rate with
hand washing—often less than 50%. Stanford Health Care has implemented
an innovative program that has significantly improved the compliance
with hand hygiene standards, most recently reporting an 86% compliance rate.
Rapid response team
Activated by a nurse, physician, respiratory therapist or physician
assistant, a Rapid Response Team (RRT) is a team of expert critical
care clinicians who provide rapid urgent and emergent care to non-ICU
patients anywhere in a hospital setting. Since Stanford's RRTs have
been in place, they have prevented many hospital complications for
patients who display acute signs or symptoms of worsening conditions.
The RRT's quick response to a patient's changing condition has led to
a 38.6% decrease in cardiopulmonary arrests since the team originated.