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Hospital Infection Rates Are Up Again, And Healthcare Reform Won’t Cure It

The number of infections acquired in hospitals continued to rise in 2009, despite threats of government sanctions and efforts by some hospitals to combat the problem. That’s according to a new report from the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research (AHRQ). Yet Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Health and Human Services, the department in which AHRQ resides, claims that the new reform law will help “turn these numbers around” by imposing a one percent Medicare penalty starting in 2015 for hospitals with high infection rates.