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Death rate 70% lower at top U.S. hospitals

HealthDay/Washington Post, October 16, 2008

The death rate at top-ranked U.S. hospitals is 70% lower than at the lowest-ranked hospitals, according to a study that examined 41 million patient records at 5,000 hospitals over three years. The study focused on 17 procedures and found that overall death rates declined by 14.7% from 2005 to 2007. Top-performing five-star hospitals reduced their death rates faster (about 13.2%) than poorer-performing one- and three-star hospitals (12.3 and 13.1%, respectively).