July 28, 2016
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published its updated star ratings for the Overall Hospital Quality Star Rating, which includes comprehensive information on the quality of care provided by hospitals nationwide.
The information can be used by patients and their families to compare the quality of care delivered at more than 4,000 hospitals throughout the United States. Access to the Overall Hospital Quality Star Rating can be found on the Hospital Compare website.
Based on 64 quality measures already reported to the Hospital Compare website, the Overall Hospital Quality Star Rating represents a summary of those measures reflected in a star rating from 1 to 5 (with 5 stars indicating the highest quality). The quality measures include seven areas of quality, including mortality, safety of care, readmissions, patient experience, effectiveness of care, timeliness of care, and efficient use of medical imaging.
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Of the 4,599 hospitals currently given an overall star rating, most received 3 stars (1,770 or 38.5%). Overall, 102 (2.2%) received 5 stars, 934 (20.3%) received 4 stars, 723 (15.7%) received 2 stars, and 133 (2.9%) received 1 star. A total of 937 (20.4%) were not eligible for rating.
Although patient and consumer advocacy groups supported release of the rating, organizations such as the American Hospital Association and others advocated for a delay to provide hospitals and the public more information on the star rating and its accurate representation of hospital performance.
This would have been the second delay as the original date of release of the rating was for April 2016.
Writing in The CMS Blog, Kate Goodrich, MD, Director of Center for Clinical Standards and Quality explained that CMS had done significant outreach to hospitals to help them better understand the methodology and data used to generate the star rating.
She emphasized that the star rating will be updated regularly, and that CMS will “continue to work closely with hospitals and other stakeholders to enhance the Overall Hospital Quality Star Rating based on feedback and experience.”
Goodrich K. Helping Consumers Make Care Choices through Hospital Compare. The CMS Blog. July 27, 2016.
Medicare. How the Hospital Compare Overall Rating is Calculated. Medicare.gov: Hospital Compare. Accessed on July 27, 2016.
Whiteman E. CMS Releases Star Ratings For Hospitals. Modern Healthcare. July 27, 2016.