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Medicare Hospital Compare Process At Hospital Compare–HHS Gov–Sample Search With 3 Southern California Hospitals

Posted Oct 24 2010 3:01pm

I have seen a lot of press of late so today I decided to take a run at this with some image sample searches and compared 3 hospitals, all very different, one owned by Tenet, one recently take over by Memorial Care and one owned by Prime.  Not as a patient but otherwise have been inside the doors of image all 3 of these facilities.  Here’s the group below and there are many others in my area since I am in southern California I could have selected as well.  image

You can pretty well get as detailed as you want with the statistics and for the most part most were within a few percentage points of each other.  Below is a sample chart on getting the right antibiotic at the right time which is indicated as being new.

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There are a number of additional items so go do a quick compare and see for yourself and determine where the value is to you.  One item that I found a bit humorous was the evaluation of surgical patients needing hair removed before surgery with a safe method and all scored well on that item.  That was just something I as a human would not have given much though to and they all do hair removal at the same quality levels <grin>. 

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Here’s an item that may have more interest and that is whether or not patients were given aspirin on arrival and discharge. 

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You can scale this out and look at charts too, such as how well did the nurses communicate with doctors.  This is ok but one thought to remember too is that in southern California we have a lot of dialects and I have listened to doctors communicating over the speaker phones and when the call was done asked them if they understood what the nurse said, as just over hearing the speaker I could not not, but one said he’s used to it speaking with and listening all the time, so in this evaluation perhaps some of that was mixed in here too and the same could be said for some doctors and patients with thick accents too so this goes full circle. 

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They all sucked at being quiet places to rest at night, and that is no surprise as there probably are not a lot that would excel here.  Noise levels are important but not as important I think as getting a qualified doctor and staff foremost.  Does this mean it’s time to pull out some ear muffs? <grin>.

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Now we come to discharge of patient ratings with what to do at home for recovery and none of them met the national average here, and many hospitals are working on this with new programs so keep in mind this does not mean you are not going to get help when being discharged these are just stats.

Now we come down to an overall rating to where the Prime hospital is showing a big drop behind the others and there may be some reasons why as they are not like some of the other hospitals who first of all have no contracts with insurance companies, they have none and thus they see a smaller amount of inpatients but run some high class ER rooms, where the billing money is at so as to charge their normal and customary fees.  That being said gives a much smaller number of patients to be surveyed too.  I mention this as with the comparison tool, everything is still not equal with a comparison of hospitals and numbers can and will vary for a number of reasons. 

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Now if you go and look at the tables, you can see how many patients contributed to the percentage points listed.

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I thought this was worth a small effort today to click around and see what came up and what is available and again was surprised at some of the information like the shaving of the hair, but as a patient or prospective patient it’s here for you to view and analyze but do it with a grain of salt in some areas and keep in mind these are just stats and your experience may be entirely different than what is shown here. 

Now let’s look at Medicare payment volumes here and see how that compared with seniors treated who have diabetes and see the cost.  Tenet hospital received twice the amount as the other two.

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Now let’s look at heart attacks and there are 3 areas listed and with acute myocardial infarction the Tenet Hospital wins again with payment.  I have no idea why and it could be contracts and/or coding and a number of other items that enter here.  So a question does one choose one hospital over another as a patient if they feel and know up front that their selected hospital gets paid better?  When you again look at the numbers here as far as care, this shows from what HHS has provided that care may not always reflect price. Come to think of it this little exercise might invigorate a couple of the others to explore their compensation and see if they are coding correctly? 

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If one has pneumonia, all 3 hospital compensations from Medicare are about the same.

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Now one last effort here was in the area of Mortality Rates and actually I was somewhat happy to see this page as again everything including demographics, type of hospital, etc. are really hard to compare so instead we see the discussion on readmissions and for these 3 hospitals we don’t have any figures. 

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Again as I mentioned keep in mind these are statistics and every hospital can have specialty areas and research where you think is most beneficial.  First of all for me I would make sure if I needed a specialty type of surgery to find a hospital that does it, but that is common sense.  You are not going to more than likely find any quiet image hospital so take those muffs if concerned and secondly know that you are in good hands here for a good shave from all <grin>.  BD

Hospitals can reduce the risk of infection after surgery by making sure they provide care that’s known to get the best results for most patients. Here are some examples:

  • Giving the recommended antibiotics at the right time before surgery
  • Stopping the antibiotics within the right timeframe after surgery
  • Maintaining the patient’s temperature and blood glucose (sugar) at normal levels
  • Removing catheters that are used to drain the bladder in a timely manner after surgery.

Hospitals can also reduce the risk of cardiac problems associated with surgery by:

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