Media releases

October 13, 2006

Baringa Private hospital leads way in delivering safer health outcomes

Baringa Private Hospital will today launch a new initiative, thanks to the support of Medibank Private, to eliminate medication errors across its facilities - an area that can have a dramatic improvement on patient outcomes.

Baringa Private Hospital has been awarded $30,000 through the Medibank Safety and Clinical Improvement Incentive Pool, set up to support private hospitals to improve quality and safety.

At a presentation ceremony held at the hospital today, Medibank praised Baringa Private Hospital's commitment to lifting the standards of patient safety and quality and for leading the industry in improving the safety and quality of healthcare for members.

Medibank Private has dedicated more than $900,000 in funding, through the Incentive Pool to hospitals across Australia to improve patient care and clinical outcomes.

Medibank' Private's Hospital Contract Manager, Eric Wirth said, the incentive pool allows us to work with private hospitals, like Baringa Private Hospital, to reduce the risk of adverse events and encourage innovation and best practice in clinical care in Australian private hospitals.

Baringa Private Hospital will use the grant to analyse current medication procedures in place in the hospital to establish where errors can occur. Using this information effective risk reduction strategies will be identified and implemented, and current work practices adjusted to reflect best practice. Once in place the project will produce tangible benefits for patients in terms of better health outcomes and reduced hospital stay time.

"Medibank has had an overwhelming response from hospitals to take part in the Incentive Pool and we're very pleased that hospitals share our commitment to improving clinical outcomes," Mr Wirth went on to say.

"We want better health outcomes for our members and the incentive pool forces us to do more than just talk about improving quality and safety.

"We are assisting hospitals to be more innovative, to lift the bar on current standards.

"It's simple really - we want the best health outcomes for our members, we asked hospitals how they could do this, they told us and we are helping them make it a reality," he said.


FACTS ABOUT THE MEDIBANK PRIVATE SAFETY AND CLINICAL IMPROVEMENT INCENTIVE POOL:

� Originally $500,000 was made available in 2006, but due to the quality of applications this increased to over $900,000.
� 34 hospitals across Australia were successful in their application
� Total value of approved proposals is $907,488
� Major areas of innovation of applications included:
 Falls prevention and management
 Improving management of medication
 Discharge and re-admission planning
 Improving patient communication and education
� A pool of $1 million will be available for distribution in 2007.


ENDS

For further information please contact:
Libby Woolnough - Medibank Private
T. (03) 8622 5181 or 0411 659 060
E: libby_woolnough@medibank.com.au


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