To address consistently rising maternal mortality rates in the U.S., The Joint Commission introduced two new perinatal safety standards originally scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2020. However, due to the current pandemic related to the COVID-19 virus, The Joint Commission decided to delay implementation of the new perinatal safety standards until January 1, 2021.
The new standards will appear under the Provision of Care, Treatment and Services (PC) chapter at PC.06.01.01 and PC.06.01.03 in the Comprehensive Accreditation Manual for Hospitals. The standards address prevention, early recognition, and timely treatment of maternal hemorrhage and severe hypertension/preeclampsia, two of the most common causes of pregnancy-related deaths.
Joint Commission-accredited hospitals will be required to meet 13 new “elements of performance” (EPs) related to maternal health as part of the accreditation requirements. Some of the specific recommendations will require hospitals to:
• Develop written, evidence-based procedures to identify and treat the conditions
• Stock easily accessible hemorrhage supply kits
• Provide role-specific education to all staff and providers who treat pregnant/postpartum patients at least every two years
• Conduct response procedure drills at least annually
• Educate patients on signs and symptoms that warrant care during hospitalization and after discharge
With only weeks left to comply with The Joint Commission standards and the focus on COVID-19, it is important that hospitals not lose sight of the January 1, 2021 deadline.
At OBHG, we’re continuing to have conversations with hospitals across the country about the new perinatal safety standards, reducing maternal mortality and implementing other evidence-based practices to improve outcomes.
To read more about how OBHG clinicians are working with hospitals to ensure they are compliant with the new standards before the implementation date, click here.
If you’d like to have a discussion with our team about the new standards, complete the form on this page and a member of our Business Development Team will contact you.