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Division of Patient Safety and Quality - Overview

Nearly 98,000 Americans die each year as a result of preventable medical errors. Over 1.5 billion dollars per year are paid, nationally, to cover the cost of medical errors which contributes to increases in across the board health care costs to consumers. The Division of Patient Safety and Quality is committed to work for safe, quality health care for the people of Illinois.

The Illinois Department of Public Health's Division of Patient Safety and Quality promotes health care transparency and is responsible for developing and implementing programs to collect and report health care provider data for improving the quality and value of health care services delivered to Illinois residents. Through the implementation of the Hospital Report Card Act, the Consumer Guide, and the Adverse Event Reporting Act, the Division will make hospital and ambulatory surgical centers performance data available to the public.

The Division also evaluates how local and national patient safety and quality standards will improve patient safety and quality in Illinois. Links to other sites with information about national quality and safety standards for health care organizations are included in the Links section.

Most files on the Division of Patient Safety and Quality web site are available for download as PDF files and require Adobe Reader to be viewed. To download the free Adobe Reader, click here.

Healthcare-associated Infection (HAI) Prevention

The Division of Patient Safety and Quality recently received an American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) grant for the development of Illinois’ HAI Prevention program. A state plan, based on a CDC template and in line with the prevention targets in the US Department of Health and Human Services Action Plan to Prevent Healthcare-associated Infections, was developed. Click here to read Illinois’ HAI state plan.

An Advisory Committee for the HAI Prevention program has been formed, and includes diverse stakeholders from throughout the state. Click here to view a list of Advisory Committee members.

Health Information Exchange Use Cases

The Public Health Work Group (PHWG) of the Illinois Health Information Exchange (HIE) Advisory Committee has developed two “use cases” to help hospitals and health care facilities achieve Stage 1 Meaningful Use objectives.

The Illinois HIE Advisory Committee was established as a diverse public health care stakeholder body to provide input and recommendations on the creation of the Illinois Health Information Exchange Authority as the Illinois vehicle for designing and implementing electronic health information exchange. Establishment of the authority transitions the efforts of the HIE Advisory Committee and the work groups into alignment with the provisions of Illinois Public Act 096-1331, the Illinois Health Information Exchange and Technology Act.

The mission of the PHWG is to provide guidance and recommendations to the HIE Advisory Committee or its successors on the exchange of data relevant to public health between HIEs that operate in Illinois and Illinois public health agencies.

Below are links to the use cases along with some additional resources.

Illinois Immunization Use Case

Electronic Lab Reporting Use Case

CDC ELR Implementation Guide v231

IL ELR Contact Information and Additional Links

Click here for further information about the Illinois Health Information Exchange.

Discharge Data

The Division of Patient Safety and Quality collects patient level discharge data from all Illinois acute care hospitals, specialty hospitals and ambulatory surgical treatment centers. The data provide information about utilization and costs of health care services. Programs in the Illinois Department of Public Health use discharge data for surveillance, health care planning, and public reporting. The data contribute to decisions about which public health strategies for disease prevention and health promotion at the state and local level will be implemented. For further information about accessing the discharge data, click here.

The Illinois Hospital Report Card and Consumer Guide to Health Care

In November, 2009 the Division of Patient Safety and Quality launched the Illinois Hospital Report Card and Consumer Guide to Health Care web site. Mandated by the Illinois Hospital Report Card Act (210 ILCS 86/) as well as the Illinois Health Finance Reform Act (20 ILCS 2215), the web site was established to provide the general public with access to meaningful information about patient care quality and costs in Illinois hospitals and ambulatory surgical treatment centers. The intent is to help consumers become more informed about health services so that they can make better choices in care. Over 175 indicators of quality, safety, utilization, and charges for specific procedures and conditions are currently displayed. The web site,, provides information on:

  • Volume and cost of services in hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers
  • Quality and safety • Healthcare-associated infections
  • Nurse staffing
  • Surgical care
  • Patient satisfaction
  • Summaries and links to Illinois laws that ensure consumer protection

Information on the site is based on quarterly data that hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers are mandated to submit to the Illinois Department of Public Health. This data includes patient claims data, nurse staffing data, surgical care processes, and health care-associated infections. Nationally recognized measures are used in reporting, and benchmarks are provided to assist consumer interpretation. The web site is updated regularly several times per year with the most recent data and often new indicators as well. A new Public Health Map feature examines issues of health care quality at the community level including access to primary care, emergency room use, and racial and ethnic disparities in care. The new feature is accessible at

Adverse Health Care Events

The Illinois Adverse Health Care Events Reporting Law of 2005 requires the Department to collect reports of certain adverse health care events in hospitals and ambulatory surgical treatment centers in Illinois. These reportable events are called "never" events because the goal is that they should never happen in a health care setting. The events are surgical events, product or device events, patient protection events, care management events, environmental events, and physical security events. These adverse events are part of the National Quality Forum never events. The Illinois Adverse Health Care Events Reporting Law requires an Advisory Council to assist wth writing the administrative rule, and to review the Department's recommendations for potential quality improvement practices and modifications to the list of reportable adverse health care events consistent with national standards. In connection with its review of the Department's recommendations, the committee shall conduct a public hearing seeking input from health care facilities, health care professionals, and the public.

The law requires that the reports include a root cause analysis of why each event happened, along with the health care facility's plan of action intended to address the root causes identified. The Division of Patient Safety and Quality will disseminate information intended to improve patient safety, quality of care, and overall hospital and ambulatory performance.

The Department is in the process of implementing this Act. Reported data will be accessible in the future.

Issue Papers

The Division of Patient Safety and Quality publishes issue papers on timely and relevant quality and safety health care topics. Several papers are posted on this web site:

For Hospitals


535 West Jefferson Street • Springfield, Illinois 62761
Phone 217-782-4977 • Fax 217-782-3987 • TTY 800-547-0466
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