While it's a big reversal for for the Bush administration to go this route, it's also interesting to note private insurers are considering following Medicare's lead. Consumer groups are in full support of the move of course, while the American Hospital Association claims the new rules will force them to collect additional data they do not already have.
Numbers from the CDC show that somewhere in the neighborhood of 100,000 people a year die in hospitals in this country from improper treatment or neglect. In the Times piece, Michigan is singled out as having recent success in reducing bloodstream infections related to catheters.
"Hospital executives said these techniques had saved 1,700 lives and $246 million by reducing infection rates in intensive care units since 2004," the Times reports.