Press Release

Statement on CDC Report on Reduction of CLABSIs

Rich Umbdenstock
President and CEO
American Hospital Association

March 1, 2011

Patients and hospitals welcome news that confirms that hospitals are making tremendous progress in reducing certain infections.  Today's report by the CDC finds that an estimated 3,000 to 6,000 lives were saved due to the associated 58 percent reduction in central line-associated blood stream infections and validates that strategies developed and implemented by hospitals are working.  We will not rest until health care associated infections are totally eliminated, and we applaud the work of hospitals, doctors, nurses and other hospital staff in making hospitals safer than ever before. 

Through efforts such as AHA's Hospitals in Pursuit of Excellence, the national implementation of the Comprehensive Unit-based Safety Program and local programs at hospital associations across the country hospitals have made real progress.  We've learned that success comes from collaboration and promotion of best practices rather than through counterproductive policies such as recent Congressional action that would penalize 25 percent of all hospitals each year - those that report the highest proportion of hospital-associated conditions, no matter how small that number may be - regardless of improvement. 

The men and women of America's hospitals are dedicated to patient safety.  At the AHA, our role is to share what works with hospitals across the country.  With the continued support of caregivers, patients and the community, we will encourage hospitals to work together to develop new and better ways to deliver the safest possible care.

About the AHA

The AHA is a not-for-profit association of health care provider organizations and individuals that are committed to the health improvement of their communities. The AHA is the national advocate for its members, which include nearly 5,000 hospitals, health care systems, networks, other providers of care and 43,000 individual members. Founded in 1898, the AHA provides education for health care leaders and is a source of information on health care issues and trends. For more information, visit the AHA website at

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