HHS won't disclose hospitals where patients contracted COVID-19

The Biden administration will not release data on COVID-19 transmission in individual hospitals, citing "privacy concerns," Politico reported June 25. 

The move is supported by the American Hospital Association, which supports the reporting of COVID-19 transmission in hospitals in aggregate versus at an individual level. "Reporting aggregate data is the most appropriate approach given the very low occurrence of hospital onset COVID-19," Nancy Foster, vice president of quality and patient safety for the AHA, told Politico in a statement. 

Patient advocates oppose keeping individual hospital data private, including Matthew Cortland, an immunocompromised disability rights activist. "A majority of voters want HHS to level with us – tell us how much coronavirus is spreading in the particular hospital we go to," Mr. Cortland told Politico. "But that transparency is inconvenient for the powerful hospital lobby."

Health officials have debated the merits of identifying hospitals' infections since the Trump administration began collecting the information in 2020, three current and former officials told Politico. The counts are made up of patients who test positive after at least 14 days in the hospital, which ensures patients didn't contract COVID-19 before admission. The counts are likely undercounts because hospitals don't report people who test positive after being discharged.

Read the Politico article in full here.

 

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