LB 25 - Patient Safety Cash Fund

 

Britt A Thedinger, MD

In this brief video message Dr. Britt Thedinger, immediate past president of the Nebraska Medical Association, talks about how Legislative Bill 25 (LB 25) came about.

LB 25 became state law effective January 1, 2020. The Nebraska Medical Association and the Nebraska Academy of Physician Assistants initiated and advocated for this legislation. The passing of LB 25 will allow for the creation of a Patient Safety Cash Fund that will be used to support NCPS activities. 

The Patient Safety Cash Fund will be established through patient safety fees that will be paid by physicians and physician assistants at the time of licensure.  The patient safety fee is $50 for physicians and $20 for physician assistants and will be collected biennially with the initial or renewal application for the credential. Answers to frequently asked questions about LB 25, NCPS, and how the funds will be used can be found here.

NCPS was formed in 2006 as a result of the Nebraska Patient Safety Improvement Act of 2005. This Act called for the establishment of a private, nonprofit 501(c)(3) patient safety organization, independent of state agencies. The Patient Safety Improvement Act of 2005 did not provide funding to support this new patient safety organization. Instead, NCPS has been dependent upon voluntary member dues and other sponsors to maintain its operations. More information about the formation of NCPS can be found here.

Since 2009, NCPS has been a federally listed Patient Safety Organization with the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Under federal law, providers who work with NCPS receive privilege and confidentiality protections that encourage reporting of patient safety events and unsafe conditions. Providers can report quality and patient safety information to NCPS confidentially—without fear of legal discovery.  These protections can help overcome provider concerns about liability exposure for sharing information about events and participating in quality improvement activities. Additional information about the federal Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act can be found here.