Hospital Groups Strike Back at Hospital Rating Systems
But Leapfrog's Hospital Safety Score, Truven Health Analytics 100 Top Hospitals, Healthgrades, Consumer Reports Hospital Safety Rankings and U.S. News and World Report, got only one star.
How Should Hospitals Respond?
HANYS spokeswoman Melissa Mansfield explained in an e-mail:
"Some of the report card publishers do have an agenda, as they profit from the licensing fees, magazine subscriptions, or consulting services through for-profit corporations. Others use their report card results to negotiate contracts with health care providers. Individual hospitals must make their own decisions about whether and how to respond to report card organizations."
U.S. News & World Report editor Ben Harder, also responding by email, said:
"One easily overlooked source of differences among different public reporting services is that the services differ in their objectives—that is, each organization seeks to measure a different dimension of healthcare quality. U.S. News aims to evaluate hospitals on whether they excel in treating the most medically challenging patients, the kind for whom hospital choice holds the highest possible stakes. The best hospitals on that dimension may or may not stand out from the pack on other dimensions of quality, such as value-based purchasing, adherence to safe practices, or routine care."
"If the new principles were followed to their letter, public reporting services would tend to identify only extreme positive or extreme negative outliers, masking clinically important variability among the vast majority of hospitals."
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