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Quality

 

Operating revenue fell faster than operating expenses for two years at hospitals which had been merged into or acquired by a new system, with no evidence of improvement on quality measures, according to a report released by the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions and Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA).

Communication-and-resolution programs (CRP) at four Massachusetts hospitals led to lower medical liability costs and improvements in patient safety after adverse events, countering concerns that telling patients about errors would motivate more to file lawsuits.

Sacramento, California-based Sutter Physician Services found success in helping to reduce readmissions at its affiliated Sutter Health hospitals by coordinating follow-up appointments and check-in calls with recently discharged patients, but communication and C-suite engagement have been critical to making the effort work.

Oct. 2 is the deadline for clinicians to start collecting performance data for the new Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and still be eligible for a positive payment adjustment in 2019. With multiple sources showing clinicians and healthcare finance professionals feel unprepared for the first year of the new payment track, some eligible providers may settle for simply avoiding a negative adjustment.

Overall star ratings on the CMS Hospital Compare website will not be updated in October as previously scheduled, according to the American Hospital Association (AHA).

 

Recent Headlines

Surgical checklist improves mortality—if leadership, surgeons are engaged

Hospitals in South Carolina that implemented a 19-point checklist for surgeons and the operating room team saw a 22 percent reduction in post-surgical deaths, according to a study due to be published in the August issue of Annals of Surgery.

Hospital inspections from accrediting organizations could become public

Located more than 1,400 pages into the regulation, the provision means CMS would require the private health care accreditors it approves, such as the Joint Commission, to publicly detail problems they find during what have been confidential inspections of hospitals and other medical facilities, as well as the corrective actions taken afterward. 

Joint Commission proposes requirements for new stroke certification

A new optional certification is being developed by the Joint Commission for hospitals which “have the capability of providing high-quality endovascular thrombectomy for patients with ischemic stroke.”

The 10 hospitals given 'F' grades by Leapfrog

Only 10 hospitals were given failing grades in the spring 2017 edition of the Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade report, though “C” grades remained the most common and four states had no hospitals earning top marks. 

Largest verdict against device maker? $454 million awarded in hospital gown lawsuit

Kimberly-Clark Corporation, known for its Kleenex tissues and Huggies diapers, has been hit with a $454 million jury verdict over a lawsuit claiming a former subsidiary misled buyers about the impermeability of its MicroCool surgical gowns.

Previews of your hospital’s star rating, quality data now available

Hospitals in CMS’s Inpatient Quality Reporting, Outpatient Quality Reporting and Prospective Payment System-Exempt Cancer Hospital Quality Reporting programs can take an early look at the star rating and quality data before the public gets to see it later this year.

Improving patient experience is not ‘just about making the patients happy’

Bon Secours Baltimore Health System has been called a facility “in the worst of America’s healthcare system,” serving the same areas depicted in the HBO crime drama “The Wire” and near the site of riots in 2015. 

Patient experience can be indicator of hospital financial performance

Performance on patient experience scores can impact the cash flow and operating profit margins of hospitals, which may mean organizations have to align quality metrics and leadership to influence patients’ perceptions of their care.

Summa Health loses appeal to save accreditation for ER residency program

Accreditation won’t be restored to the emergency department residency program at Ohio-based Summa Health System after its appeal was denied by the Accreditation Council on Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).

D.C. hospital first to receive Joint Commission/AABB blood transfusion certification

The Joint Commission and the AABB (formerly the American Association of Blood Banks) has awarded its first Patient Blood Management Certification to MedStar-Georgetown University Hospital in Washington, D.C.

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