The Patient Safety Movement Foundation is urging Congress to reject efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) without a suitable replacement that will continue the healthcare law’s record of improving patient safety. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act not only provides more than 20 million patients access to healthcare but also created new payment rules that incentivize doctors and hospitals to minimize preventable deaths due to medical errors.
“There are many programs created by the ACA, like those that are averting Hospital Acquired Conditions (HACs), that are saving lives,” said Patient Safety Movement Founder Joe Kiani. “Repealing the ACA without a thoughtful process in place to make hospitals safer is bad public policy and irresponsible.”
HACs are adverse medical conditions acquired due to medical errors during a hospital stay. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) reports that, since the enactment of the ACA in 2010, HACs have declined by 17 percent; this reduction equates to 125,000 patient lives saved and a savings of nearly $28 billion in taxpayer dollars.
“While there are certainly improvements that can be made to the ACA, blindly repealing it without deference to patient safety will put hundreds of thousands of American lives at risk,” Kiani concluded.