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March 18, 2005, Issue No. 162

AHRQ News and Numbers

During 2000, as many as 5 million admissions to U.S. hospitals (or nearly 15 percent of hospital stays) could have been prevented with high-quality primary and preventive care. [Source: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, HCUP Fact Book No. 5, Preventable Hospitalizations: Window Into Primary and Preventive Care, 2000.

Today's Headlines:

  1. Study finds hospital leaders have serious reservations about mandatory error reporting
  2. New emergency information center model helps public health agencies meet demand for health information
  3. Register now for April 4 AHRQ conference: "Improving Health Care for All Americans"
  4. Second telephone briefing on hospital patient safety culture survey set for March 24
  5. 2005 Building Bridges Conference set for April 6-8
  6. Translating Research Into Practice conference set for July 18-20
  7. Do you know how AHRQ's research is being used?
  8. AHRQ in the professional literature

1.  Study Finds Hospital Leaders Have Serious Reservations About Mandatory Error Reporting

A survey of hospital leaders found that nearly 70 percent believed that a non-confidential, mandatory system would discourage staff from reporting patient safety incidents to their hospital's own internal reporting system, and almost 80 percent thought it would encourage lawsuits. The AHRQ-funded study, led by Joel S. Weissman, Ph.D., of Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, was published in the March 16 issue of JAMA. The researchers also found that more than 80 percent felt the names of both the hospital and involved staff members should be kept confidential, although respondents from states with mandatory, non-confidential systems already in place were more willing to have hospital names released. Over 90 percent said their hospital would report serious injuries to their state hospital licensing agencies, but far fewer would report moderate or minor injuries. However, the hospital leaders surveyed generally did favor disclosing patient safety incidents to patients who were involved. Select to read the abstract in PubMed®.

2.  New Emergency Information Center Model Helps Public Health Agencies Meet Demand for Health Information

AHRQ released the Health Emergency Assistance Line and Triage Hub (HEALTH) model, developed by Denver Health, a partner in AHRQ's Integrated Delivery System Research Network. The new operations model for emergency call centers is designed to help public health agencies and other first responders prepare to provide accurate, timely information during a health emergency. The HEALTH model offers guidance to organizations on the requirements, specifications, and resources needed to develop a public health emergency contact center that is highly integrated with public health agencies and that can reduce the likelihood of hospitals and health systems being overwhelmed with calls and requests for information. Select to read our press release and to view the report and companion Contact Center Assessment Tool Set. A print copy of the report is available by sending an E-mail to

3.  Register Now for April 4 AHRQ Conference: "Improving Health Care for All Americans"

Time is running out to register for AHRQ's first annual health care summit, "Improving Health Care for All Americans." This 1-day meeting will be held on April 4 at the Renaissance Hotel in Washington, DC. This meeting will highlight trends in health care quality improvement and disparities elimination and showcase the efforts of health systems, health plans, health care purchasing organizations, government programs, professional associations, and other organizations to bring about high-quality health care. Confirmed speakers include Mark McClellan, M.D., Administrator, CMS; Governor Mike Huckabee of Arkansas; Don Berwick, M.D., President and CEO, Institute for Healthcare Improvement; John Nelson, M.D., President, American Medical Association; Randall Maxey, M.D., President, National Medical Association; David Schulke, Executive Vice President, American Health Quality Association; and Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, M.D., President and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, among others. Seating is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

4.  Second Telephone Briefing on Hospital Patient Safety Culture Survey Set for March 24

Save the date! On March 24, from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. EST, AHRQ will host its second technical assistance telephone briefing on the Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture. This briefing, "Survey Administration Logistics," will help answer such questions as how to select a sample; deciding whether to use a Web, paper, or scannable survey; when and how to modify the survey; and how to analyze and interpret survey results. Speakers will include those responsible for the development of the survey and users who have administered the survey. Please register for this toll-free call by sending your first name and last name in the body of an E-mail to: In addition, you may submit questions about survey administration issues ahead of time by including them in the body of your E-mail. Having your questions in advance will help us make sure we address as many issues as possible during the call. The call-in number and passcode will be sent to you prior to the call. The Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture is currently available online. Printed copies may be obtained by sending an E-mail to

5.  2005 Building Bridges Conference Set for April 6-8

AHRQ, CDC, and America's Health Insurance Plans are co-sponsoring the 2005 Building Bridges Conference: Applying Evidence-Based Solutions to Health Care Priorities, to be held April 6-8 in Santa Fe, NM. The conference will focus on critical health research areas, an ideal complement to the keynote speakers, who will examine the landscape of evidence-based policy, accountability, and quality. The lineup of concurrent session speakers showcases innovative research from across the country—including representatives from AHRQ, Brandeis University, Hablamos Juntos, Health Services Advisory Group, Henry Ford Health System, CDC, Carlson School of Business, University of Minnesota, Center for Health Research-KP Northwest, RAND, Blue Shield of Illinois, University of Michigan, HealthPartners Research Foundation, HIP Health Plan of New York, Center for Applied Research on Aging and Health, Prescription for Health, and others.

6.  Translating Research Into Practice Conference Set for July 18-20

Mark your calendar! The third annual Translating Research Into Practice (TRIP) conference will be held on July 18-20 in Washington, DC. This year's conference will highlight two challenging areas for TRIP: obesity and health disparities. In addition, the conference will continue to provide an opportunity to share innovative TRIP research and implementation methods, case studies, and other experiences.

7.  Do You Know How AHRQ's Research Is Being Used?

We are always looking for ways in which AHRQ-funded research, products, and tools have changed people's lives, influenced clinical practice, improved policies, and affected patient outcomes. These impact case studies describe AHRQ research findings in action. These case studies are used in testimony, budget documents, and speeches. We would like to know if you are aware of any impact your AHRQ-funded research has had on health care policy, clinical practice, or patient outcomes. Contact AHRQ's Impact Case Studies Program at or (301) 427-1243 with your impact stories.

8.  AHRQ in the Professional Literature

We are providing the following hyperlinks to journal abstracts through PubMed® for your convenience. Unfortunately, some of you may not be able to access the abstracts because of firewalls or specific settings on your individual computer systems. If you are having problems, you should ask your technical support staff for possible remedies.

Fang J, Alderman MH. Revascularization among patients with acute myocardial infarction complicated by cardiogenic shock and impact of American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association guidelines. Am J Cardiol 2004 Nov 15;94(10):1281-5. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Norris SL, Zhang X, Avenell A, et al. Long-term effectiveness of lifestyle and behavioral weight loss interventions in adults with type 2 diabetes: a meta-analysis. Am J Med 2004 Nov 15;117(10):762-74. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Hubbard HB, Collins Sharp B. An opportunity for health services research. Am J Nurs 2004 Nov;104(11):89-91. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Boockvar KS, Litke A, Penrod JD, et al. Patient relocation in the 6 months after hip fracture: risk factors for fragmented care. J Am Geriatr Soc 2004 Nov;52(11):1826-31. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Christakis DA, Ebel BE, Rivara FP, et al. Television, video, and computer game usage in children under 11 years of age. J Pediatr 2004 Nov;145(5):652-6. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Contact Information

Please address comments and questions regarding the AHRQ Electronic Newsletter to Nancy Comfort at or (301) 427-1866.

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Current as of March 2005


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