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Patient Harm Data to Remain on Medicare's Hospital Compare Site

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, May 16, 2013

"Despite their removal from IQR, we will continue to calculate these claims-based measures and supply data via data.medicare.gov," he wrote in an e-mail after the interview. "Moreover, third parties also have the option of requesting claims data through RESDAC, and calculating the claims based HAC measures themselves." 

"Just because a measure is not reported to the IQR program, it doesn't mean that it will be taken off Hospital Compare," he says. These eight measures, of the 11 hospital-acquired conditions for which Medicare denies hospitals reimbursement under provisions of the 2005 Deficit Reduction Act (DRA), and which are now posted on Hospital Compare, "will continue to be displayed and available in the downloadable database after July, 2013."

3 measures go away
Three measures, however, are being removed from the IQR program, and will be removed from Hospital Compare in July. They will no longer be available for download. But they aren't among the DRA HACs referred to in the Bloomberg story. They are:

  • Deaths for certain conditions
  • Death after surgery to repair weakness in the abdominal aorta
  • Deaths after admission for a broken hip

A fourth type of hospital-acquired condition, breathing failure after surgery, is no longer in the IQR and will no longer be displayed on Hospital Compare after July, 2013. But results will be updated in a downloadable database in either October or December. Currently, the information is unavailable on Hospital Compare, CMS says, due to a software problem.

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