Study Reveals Differences in Quality Standards Among US Hospitals




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Next time you contemplate which hospital to visit for a procedure, the number one factor to consider may not be insurance coverage or cost, but the facility’s performance on quality standards. And it’s with good reason.

According to an independent report released today, the difference in quality between a 5-star rated hospital and a 1-star rated facility is startling. The 2011 Healthcare Consumerism and Hospital Quality Report in America, an analysis conducted by HealthGrades, discovered that patients have almost a 75% lower chance of fatality at a 5-star rated hospital as compared to a one-star medical center. The three-year study also concluded that if all hospitals achieved the five-star level, fatalities and complications may have been averted for over 400,000 Medicare patients.

Equally compelling is that more and more patients are not just using the Internet to play computer doctor through Web sites like The study concluded that a major increase was seen in users searching the Internet for quality ratings on doctors and hospitals. In 2003, only 21% of users searched doctor or hospital-specific information. In the three-year timeframe of 2008-2010, the percentage increased to 47% (doctor searches) and 38% (hospital searches). estimates that 10 million people a month research physician and hospital quality.

As the healthcare reform of 2010 is gradually implemented, hospitals will find themselves seeking best practices to meet new standards. As mentioned by Hugh Morgan, Somnia’s director of quality assurance, quality control standards are at the top of the list.

“The era of Value-Based Purchasing is here and the factors that most influence the new pay-for-performance model are quality of care and patient satisfaction,” says Morgan. “The HealthGrades study validates this new health reform era of comparative effectiveness which clearly and quantifiably separates those hospitals performing at the highest levels of quality and safety.”

Somnia Anesthesia

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