Uncertain hospital care

The Washington Post today Thursday reports on the inconsistencies in the quality of basic care provided by US hospitals. Based on two analyses published in The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), it was found "that despite overall improvement, care varies dramatically around the country, with those in the North and Midwest generally outperforming those in the South and West;" and that even within regions and types of hospital (e.g., city medical centers, non-profit hospitals, or those associated with medical schools) quality of care greatly varied. The two separate studies, by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) and by the Hospital Quality Alliance, are the first to use nationwide data instead of the former approach of studying individual institutions or patient groups.

Ashish K. Jha of the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston is reported as stating, "Overall in many hospitals the care is still not nearly as good as it should be. These are important therapies, and these are easy to deliver. It really should be close to 100 percent."

Quality of Care in U.S. Hospitals as Reflected by Standardized Measures, 2002–2004
(abstract provided by NEJM)

Care in U.S. Hospitals - The Hospital Quality Alliance Program
(abstract provided by NEJM)

See also, Hospital Compare
(online database by US Dept of Health and Human Services)


Post a Comment

<< Home