Report Tracks Patient Outcomes at 5,000 U.S.
TUESDAY, Oct. 18 (HealthDay News) -- Large gaps in quality
persist among hospitals in the United States, according to a new
report that examined patient outcomes at nearly 5,000 hospitals
across the country.
For example, patients at 5-star rated hospitals (highest rating)
were 73 percent less likely to die than those at 1-star rated
hospitals, according to the
2011 Healthcare Consumerism and Hospital Quality in
America report by HealthGrades, an independent source of
physician and hospital quality outcomes.
If all hospitals performed at the 5-star level over the three
years studied, the lives of more than 240,000 Medicare patients
could have been saved, the report stated.
The findings are based on 40 million hospitalization records
from the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services that were
analyzed for death and complication rates for 27 medical procedures
and diagnoses at all of the nation's nonfederal hospitals from 2008
The investigators also examined patients' use of the Internet to
research physician and hospital quality. The top 10 cities for
patient Web use for such research from January 2011 through July
2011 were: Washington D.C.; New York; Kansas City, Mo.; Seattle;
Boston; Philadelphia; Gainesville, Fla.; Dallas; Atlanta and
The report outlined the types of patients who go online to check
physician and hospital quality. They are typically aged 25 to 54
and most (93 percent) have health insurance, nearly two-thirds (63
percent) are female, half have household incomes greater than
$75,000 annually, 80 percent are "very or somewhat" concerned about
the quality of hospital care in their community, and nearly 94
percent said they would seek care at a higher-rated hospital even
if it meant that they had to go out of their way to get there.
"Patients are increasingly demanding objective clinical quality measures on which to base their health care decisions," Kerry Hicks, HealthGrades chief executive officer, said in a HealthGrades news release.
The U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality offers tips
choosing quality care.
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