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Vital New Quality Data on Hospital Readmission Rates Available on Hospital Compare Website
Date:7/9/2009

WASHINGTON, July 9 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, released for the first time on Hospital Compare (www.hospitalcompare.hhs.gov) are hospital readmission rates for Medicare patients with heart attack, heart failure and pneumonia. This vital new quality information for health care consumers, clinicians and hospitals expands information offered by CMS and supported by the Hospital Quality Alliance (HQA) - a broad working group of hospital groups, consumer representatives, physician and nursing organizations, employers and payers, oversight organizations and government agencies dedicated to improving health care quality and making useful and understandable information about hospital quality available to the public.

The new data provide to the public and hospitals information on how often a Medicare patient with one of the three conditions returns to a hospital within 30 days of being discharged. The readmission rates are being added to information already available on how often hospitals take the right steps to provide care for these patients, as well as updated information on mortality rates.

The issue of hospital readmissions has been cited by the policymakers and the Administration as a potential opportunity for improving health care quality and reducing unnecessary health care spending. Until now, hospitals have had only information on those patients who return to their own hospital, but not about patients who were readmitted to a different hospital. The information on Hospital Compare shows how often a Medicare patient with one of these conditions returns to the same hospital or a different hospital within 30 days following their initial stay.

Hospitals are placed in one of three categories based on their readmission rate in relation to a national readmission rate - "no different than
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SOURCE Hospital Quality Alliance
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