Office of Healthcare Quality (OHQ)
The Office of Healthcare Quality (OHQ) was established by the Assistant Secretary for Health in December 2009 to lead and coordinate cross-cutting issues that strengthen the health system and improve the quality of healthcare and public health across the United States. It is located within the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH), under the Office of the Secretary (OS) in the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS).
Advancing the quality of public health and healthcare services for a healthier nation.
Establish quality as the foundation of an equitable and integrated public health and healthcare delivery system.
OHQ currently has one key activities: the Healthcare-Associated Infections Prevention Initiative.
Healthcare-associated infections, or HAIs, are infections that patients acquire while receiving treatment for other conditions. At any given time, about 1 in every 20 patients has an infection related to their hospital care. These infections cost the U.S. healthcare system billions of dollars each year and lead to the loss of tens of thousands of lives.
In 2009, HHS released the Action Plan to Prevent Healthcare-Associated Infections (Action Plan). The plan serves as a road map for acute care hospitals to reduce and prevent infections.
A revised and expanded Action Plan is scheduled for release in 2011. The content for acute care hospitals will be updated and expanded and will include new sections specific to ambulatory surgical centers, end-stage renal disease facilities, as well as strategies for increasing flu vaccination among healthcare personnel.
The Action Plan represents the efforts of a broad partnership and commitment across HHS and other Departments, including the:
- Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)
- National Institutes of Health (NIH)
- Indian Health Service (IHS)
- Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA)
- Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
- Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH)
- National Vaccine Program Office (NVPO)
- Office of Healthcare Quality (OHQ)
- Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE)
- Office of the Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs (ASPA)
- Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC)
- U.S. Department of Defense
- U.S. Department of Labor
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs