Timely and effective care in hospital emergency departments is essential for good patient outcomes. Delays before getting care in the emergency department can reduce the quality of care and increase risks and discomfort for patients with serious illnesses or injuries. Waiting times at different hospitals can vary widely, depending on the number of patients seen, staffing levels, efficiency, admitting procedures, or the availability of inpatient beds.
The information above shows how quickly the selected hospitals treat patients who come to the emergency department, compared to state and national averages.
Returning to the hospital for unplanned care disrupts patients' lives, increases their risk of harmful events like healthcare-associated infections, and costs more money. Hospitals that give high quality care can keep patients from returning to the hospital and reduce their stay if they have to come back.
The readmission measures are estimates of the rate of unplanned readmission to an acute care hospital in the 30 days after discharge from a hospitalization. Patients may have had an unplanned readmission for any reason.
Sepsis is a complication that occurs when your body has an extreme response to an infection. It causes damage to organs in the body and can be life-threatening if not treated. Sepsis can sometimes turn into septic shock, which has a higher risk of death. Identifying sepsis early and starting appropriate care quickly increase the chances of survival.
These measures show how often or how quickly hospitals provide care that research shows gets the best results for patients with certain conditions, and how hospitals use outpatient medical imaging tests (like CT scans and MRIs). This information can help you compare which hospitals give recommended care most often as part of the overall care they provide to patients.
Healthcare-associated infections, or HAIs, are infections that people get while they're getting treatment for another condition in a healthcare setting. HAIs can occur in all settings of care, including acute care hospitals, long term acute care hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, surgical centers, cancer hospitals, and skilled nursing facilities. Many of these infections can be prevented through the use of proper procedures and precautions.
Infections are reported using a standardized infection ratio (SIR). The SIR compares the actual number of infections at a hospital to a national benchmark based on data reported to the National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN). Lower numbers are better.
Patients who are admitted to the hospital for treatment of medical problems sometimes get other serious injuries, complications, or conditions, and may even die. Some patients may experience problems soon after they are discharged and need to be admitted to the hospital again. These events can often be prevented if hospitals follow best practices for treating patients.
This section shows serious complications that patients experienced during a hospital stay or after having certain inpatient surgical procedures. These complications can often be prevented if hospitals follow procedures based on best practices and scientific evidence.
The payment for heart attack, heart failure, and pneumonia measures add up all payments made for care starting the day the patient enters the hospital and continuing for the next 30 days. The payment for hip/knee replacement measure adds up payments starting the day the patient enters the hospital and continuing for the next 90 days. This can include payments made to the hospital, doctor's office, skilled nursing facility, hospice, as well as patient copayments made during this time. Payments can be from Medicare, other health insurers, or the patients themselves. Looking at how payments vary is one way to see differences in how hospitals and other healthcare providers care for patients.
The goal of risk adjustment for the payment measures is to account for patient characteristics that are clinically relevant and strongly related to the outcome. These characteristics include the patient’s age, past medical history, and other diseases or conditions (comorbidities) the patient had during the hospital admission that are known to increase payments in the 30 days (or 90 days for hip/knee replacement) following admission. The measures also remove payment differences unrelated to care, including geographic factors and policy adjustments. Together these adjustments ensure that the measure results reported reflect variation in payments unrelated to how sick a hospital’s patients were or where the hospital is located.
Facilities in the top left quadrant represent high death rate with low cost, while facilities in the top right quadrant represent both high death rate and high cost. Facilities in the bottom left quadrant represent both low death rate and low cost, while facilities in the bottom right quadrant represent low death rate and high cost.
Looking at payment measures together with quality-of-care measures (such as death rates or complic ation rates) allows you to compare the value of care between hospitals. The payment measures add up the payments for care starting the day the patient enters the hospital and continuing for the next 30 or 90 days. For example, this can include payments to the hospital, doctor’s office, skilled nursing facility, hospice, as well as patient copayments made during this time.
The quality measures below look at death rates (in the first 30 days after patients are hospitalized) or complication rates (in the first 90 days after patients are hospitalized). This includes deaths for any reason (not just from a heart attack, heart failure, or pneumonia), or complications that are defined by a set of specific events and timeframes.
The number of employees is estimated based on a quarterly or semiannual sampling of total hours worked by full-time employees for the week at the beginning of each sample.
These total employee work hours worked are then divided by the total work hours per sample (40 times the number of samples) to yield an overall estimate of the number of employees.
The patient survey ratings summarize patient experience, which is one aspect of hospital quality. There might be other information that's important to you that isn't included in the patient survey ratings. You should use ratings along with other quality information when making decisions about choosing a hospital. A low rating doesn't mean that you'll get poor care from a hospital. It means that hospitals that got 2 or more stars performed better on this particular measure of patient experience of care.
The patient survey rating measures patients' experiences of their hospital care. Recently discharged patients were asked about important topics like how well nurses and doctors communicated, how responsive hospital staff were to their needs, and the cleanliness and quietness of the hospital environment.
The charge-to-cost ratio is calculated as a hospital's total gross charges divided by its total Medicare-allowable cost. To account for drastic differences in costs and charges due to the facility size, the values shown on the graph have been scaled logarithmically.
The closer the cost-to-charge ratio is to 1, the less difference there is between the actual costs incurred and the hospital's charges