Hospitals accepting Medicare patients must start in 2011 to report hospital-acquired infection rates to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Healthcare Safety Network under a final rule setting Medicare inpatient and long-term care payment rates for next year.

For 2011, hospitals must report central line associated bloodstream infections on a quarterly basis. Reporting of additional types of infections will be required in subsequent years. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services will post hospital infection rates on its consumer-oriented Hospital Compare Web site.

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