LET­TER FROM MOD­ERN HEALTH­CARE

Re­ports look at per­for­mance, dis­par­i­ties

Modern Healthcare - 100 Top Hospitals - - FRONT PAGE - David Burda

Com­par­ing the connection be­tween clin­i­cal and fi­nan­cial per­for­mance and sys­tem mem­ber­ship yields in­ter­est­ing re­sults.

Swim with a friend. Never go hik­ing alone. There’s safety in num­bers. Travel with a group. All are ex­pres­sions we’ve heard since our par­ents thought we were old enough to un­der­stand. What we didn’t know then was that the same prin­ci­ples ap­ply in health­care de­liv­ery. Wel­come to our 12th annual 100 Top Hos­pi­tals sup­ple­ment where each year we at­tempt to an­swer the ques­tion: What do high-performing hos­pi­tals do dif­fer­ently than lesser-performing hos­pi­tals? In pre­vi­ous sup­ple­ments, we’ve looked at such vari­ables as pa­tient-safety strate­gies, new med­i­cal tech­nolo­gies, spe­cific clin­i­cal prac­tices, nurse-staffing ra­tios, the use of hos­pi­tal­ists, la­bor costs, avoid­able med­i­cal er­rors, pa­tient-sat­is­fac­tion scores, own­er­ship sta­tus and re­source con­sump­tion.

For this is­sue, Tru­ven Health An­a­lyt­ics, which puts together the annual list of 100 Top Hos­pi­tals, con­ducted an ex­clu­sive study at Mod­ern Health­care’s re­quest on the connection be­tween clin­i­cal and fi­nan­cial per­for­mance and sys­tem mem­ber­ship. (Tru­ven Health An­a­lyt­ics is the new name for Thom­son Reuters’ health­care unit, which was bought by Ver­i­tas Cap­i­tal.) Tru­ven’s re­searchers com­pared more than 1,600 sys­tem hos­pi­tals with al­most 1,200 in­de­pen­dent hos­pi­tals on 10 per­for­mance mea­sures. We won’t give away the find­ings in this in­tro­duc­tion, but let’s just say your par­ents were right. They al­ways are.

A sec­ond piece of ex­clu­sive re­search re­ported in this sup­ple­ment, how­ever, does buck con­ven­tional wis­dom. With health­care dis­par­i­ties and read­mis­sion rates be­ing two of the hottest top­ics in the in­dus­try, re­searchers com­pared the 30-day mor­tal­ity and 30-day read­mis­sion rates of white pa­tients and mi­nor­ity pa­tients. Turns out, mi­nori­ties have a lower mor­tal­ity rate but a higher read­mis­sion rate. Read on to learn why.

Mod­ern Health­care re­porter Beth Kutscher wrote the lead story on the sys­tem per­for­mance study. You can reach her at bkutscher@ mod­ern­health­care.com. Former Mod­ern Health­care re­porter and fre­quent con­trib­u­tor Linda Wil­son wrote the sec­ondary fea­ture on the race study. You can reach Wil­son at lin­da­jwil­son@com­cast.net. We thank them both for a job well done.

Also in this sup­ple­ment are this year’s 15 Top Health Sys­tems list from Tru­ven as well as the firm’s 100 Top Hos­pi­tals list. The lists orig­i­nally ap­peared in the Jan. 16 and April 16 is­sues of Mod­ern Health­care, re­spec­tively. You can also down­load both lists at mod­ern­health­care.com/data.

Sep­a­rately, you can lis­ten to a re­broad­cast or down­load a tran­script of our April 24 ed­i­to­rial we­b­cast on the pros and cons of sys­tem mem­ber­ship at mod­ern­health­care.com/we­b­casts. The we­b­cast fea­tures three top health sys­tems iden­ti­fied by Tru­ven.

If you have any ques­tions or com­ments on the sup­ple­ment or would like to sug­gest top­ics for fu­ture anal­y­sis, please con­tact me at 312-6495439 or dburda@mod­ern­health­care.com.

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