The Washington Post

O’Malley touts Maryland’s efforts to reduce ‘preventable hospitalizations’

Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) on Wednesday touted a 11.5 percent decrease in the rate of “preventable hospitalizations” in Maryland between 2011 and 2013, a trend he said is saving health-care costs and is the result of some innovative new programs.

O’Malley, whose tenure ends in January, made the announcement during a stop at the Western Maryland Regional Medical Center in Cumberland as part of a series of events assessing progress on goals he has set for the state.

In 2011, there were 1,605 preventable hospitalizations for every 100,000 state residents, according to the governor’s office. By last year, the figure had dropped to 1,420 per 100,000. That pace exceeded a goal set by O’Malley, he said.

Among the strategies O’Malley credited are health-enterprise zones, which focus resources in economically disadvantaged areas, and a system of electronic information sharing among physicians and hospitals launched in 2009.

O’Malley, who is weighing a 2016 White House bid, also released a paper Wednesday recounting Maryland’s “data-driven approach to containing costs and advancing health.”

John Wagner is a political reporter covering the race for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination.

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