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November 12, 2019

For Immediate Release:

HANYS issues new report on hospital report cards

Wide variation in results confuses patients and unfairly burdens providers

ALBANY, N.Y. — The wide variation among hospital quality reports confuses and potentially misleads patients and unfairly burdens healthcare providers. The Healthcare Association of New York State’s new Report on Report Cards evaluates 12 prominent government, not-for-profit and for-profit hospital quality report cards.

“Patients, policymakers and practitioners all agree that reliable, accurate and consistent quality measures are essential to improving healthcare services,” said HANYS President Bea Grause, RN, JD. “However, too many measures, methodology variations and inconsistent results confuse consumers and put an unfair burden on providers.”

Multiple organizations issue report cards on hospital performance. Each uses a different approach, generating varied scores for the same hospital and leaving it unclear to the public what scores, if any, are accurate indicators of performance.

Quality measurement and reporting are critical to improving patient care, outcomes and experience. However, managing the influx of conflicting and sometimes misleading quality information can drain limited hospital resources that can otherwise be directed to addressing more meaningful quality and safety priorities.

“HANYS calls on all stakeholders to streamline, align and focus on the measures that matter most for patients,” said Loretta Willis, RN, BSN, CPHQ, CCM, vice president, quality advocacy, research and innovation and post-acute/continuing care. “We urge stakeholders to reduce the number of report cards so that information is less confusing for consumers and so providers can focus on improving patient care.”

“We welcome the insight and clarity that HANYS’ Report on Report Cards provides,” said Martha Radford, MD, FACC, FAHA, senior clinical quality advisor at NYU Langone Health. “Its thoughtful consideration of the current plethora of public reports about healthcare quality helps all patients and caregivers.”

“New and often conflicting report cards are released on a regular basis. HANYS’ Report on Report Cards helps make sense of these reports so that our organizations can focus on the important work of improving patient care,” said Robert Panzer, MD, associate vice president, patient care quality and safety, University of Rochester Medical Center.

“Hospital performance is being evaluated in the public and private sectors by multiple conflicting measures, with significant consequences for the organization’s reputation and penalties that can impact our ability to provide patient care,” said Mark Jarrett, MD, MBA, MS, senior vice president, chief quality officer and associate chief medical officer, Northwell Health. “This intense scrutiny often drives efforts to improve report card grades, rather than true performance improvement. This measure environment gets more challenging by the day; change is needed so that we can measure what counts and focus on better care for our patients.”

“This report serves as a primer for evaluating publicly available consumer report cards in an understandable and meaningful way,” said Ronette M. Wiley, RN, BSN, MHSA, CPPS, executive vice president and chief operating officer, Bassett Medical Center. “Additionally, the insights related to new and emerging challenges in the world of healthcare quality management will benefit those leading this work in our organizations.”

The Healthcare Association of New York State is the only statewide hospital and continuing care association in New York state, representing nonprofit and public hospitals, nursing homes, home care agencies and other healthcare organizations.