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Press Release

Contra Costa Regional Medical Center Improves Patient Outcomes, Named Mentor Hospital

June 7, 2006

On June 14, when more than 3,000 hospitals across the country celebrate the first-year anniversary of a national campaign to dramatically improve patient care and prevent avoidable deaths, one East Bay hospital will be especially proud of its achievements.

Contra Costa Regional Medical Center (CCRMC) in Martinez is participating in the 100,000 Lives Campaign, coordinated by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI). In the past year, CCRMC has achieved significant improvements thanks to hard work by its six "improvement teams" including staff from all areas of the medical center.

And in an extraordinary honor, CCRMC was named recently by the Institute as a Mentor Hospital in one of the six areas - medication reconciliation. They are one of only nine hospitals so named nationally and the only one in the Western United States. CCRMC has already been contacted by several other hospitals and been featured presenters in two national conference calls regarding medication reconciliation.

Medical reconciliation involves cross-checking a patient's records to make sure all their medication information is consistent. In just one year, the number of patients with completely reconciled medications on admission has improved from 53% to 93%.

"You are one of the stand-outs," said IHI's Matt Louchheim, congratulating CCRMC staff on being named a Mentor Hospital. "We're looking to you. You're leading the change."

CCRMC teams used a variety of IHI-developed initiatives to accomplish their improvements. Besides medication reconciliation, teams are working to reduce surgical site and central line infections, provide rapid response teams to prevent cardiac arrests, improve acute myocardial infarction treatment and eliminate ventilator-associated pneumonia. Nationwide, problems in those areas and others result in the death of 98,000 patients each year.

As a result of the campaign, the average time for patients to receive aspirin upon being admitted to the hospital has been cut by almost 90%, which in turn improves their rate of recovery. Ventilator associated pneumonia rates have also been reduced by 90%.

"The IHI initiatives have given our staff the tools to make key improvements," said Dr. Steven Tremain, CCRMC's Senior Medical Director in charge of System Redesign. "The results we've achieved are a testament to what happens when a group of dedicated professionals work together to develop solutions and put them immediately into operation using proven methodologies."

Contra Costa Regional Medical Center, which is run by Contra Costa Health Services, built its current hospital in 1997. Contra Costa Health Services has received funding to work on this campaign from California Blue Shield and the Kaiser Permanente Foundation. The Institute for Healthcare Improvement was founded in 1991 and is based in Cambridge, Mass. For more information about CCRMC, go to the CCHS website at and click on Regional Medical Center.

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Press Contact
  • Dr. Steven Tremain or
  • Anna Roth, RN
  • 925-370-5100