Montpelier, VT— The 2009 Hospital Report Card Comparison, now available on-line, features quality of care, pricing and financial data for Vermont hospitals. The data is on the website of Vermont’s Department of Banking, Insurance Securities and Health Care Administration (BISHCA). Commissioner of BISHCA Paulette Thabault said, “Putting these hospital report card measures on public view creates transparency for Vermont consumers who can now weigh this information, along with other important factors, when choosing hospital services.” Posting the data also results in better patient care and experiences for Vermonters. Said Commissioner Thabault, “Hospitals look at the comparative scores and ask, ‘How can we improve this measurement?’ They sharpen their focus on the issues, commit resources, and the improvements follow.”
BISHCA oversees the collection and publication of the data, and publishes the overall Hospital Report Card Comparison on its website. Go to www.vthospitalreportcards.info or see link on www.vermont.gov . The reporting is made possible with the valuable help of the Vermont Program for Quality in Health Care, the Vermont Association of Hospitals and Health Systems, the Vermont hospitals, the Vermont Health Department and consumers. Now in its 5th year, the publication of the hospital report card data arose from 2003 legislation known as Act 53, a bill covering a range of health care facilities planning and regulation. The website has expanded each year.
Vermont continues to be one of only a handful of states in the country reporting hospital-specific infection rates. This year, with expanded data, consumers can now review information on surgical infections related to abdominal hysterectomies, knee replacements and hip replacements. Prior reporting categories include: Intensive care unit infection rates associated with the insertion of a tube called a central line (central lines are used to administer medications and other procedures); information on nurse staffing; quality of heart attack care; quality of heart failure care, quality of pneumonia care, and preventing complications from surgery. In addition, certain pricing information is provided for the most common hospital inpatient care and diagnostic categories, the most common outpatient surgical procedures, certain physician office visits and other services. Also, the pricing area of the web site provides links to each hospital’s free and discount care policies and reports on the financial health of Vermont hospitals.