Healthcare-associated infections have received heightened attention from providers, patients and payers since the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services added HAIs to the list of “never events” — conditions that can be prevented by reasonable methods, and would no longer be paid for by CMS if they occurred — the agency established in October 2008. 

Since then, 38 states have enacted laws requiring hospitals to report various infections, 29 of which are required to report their results publicly. In July 2011, the Joint Commission issued 13 hospital national patient safety goals, which include four goals targeting infection prevention. 

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