I’m Doug Hawthorne, CEO of Texas Health Resources, with “The Business of Health Care Report.”
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and hospitals across the United States have taken another step in the journey towards greater transparency in health care.
For the first time, public information about patients’ experiences during hospital stays is now accessible on HospitalCompare.gov. This government-sponsored Web site allows consumers to access side-by-side comparisons of patient satisfaction scores at hospitals across the nation.
The survey, called the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Hospitals and Health Systems, captures patients' opinions on critical aspects of care, such as communication with doctors and nurses. The data covers a nine-month period from October 2006 through June 2007.
I am happy to report that on average, our family of hospitals scored above the national and state averages in every area surveyed. Seventy-nine percent of patients surveyed across our 13-hospital system said they would “definitely” recommend our hospitals, compared to state and national averages of 67 percent.
An informed patient is one of the keys to controlling cost and improving quality of care and patient satisfaction. It helps you, the consumer, make more informed decisions about your care, and it allows health care providers to benchmark their performance so they can improve.
At Texas Health, improving quality and patient safety is our number one priority.
For our faith-based hospitals – Texas Health Harris Methodist, Texas Health Presbyterian and Texas Health Arlington Memorial – I’m Doug Hawthorne.