Let’s set the record straight on qual­ity at ru­ral hospi­tals

Modern Healthcare - - COMMENT -

As stated in the re­cent Vi­tal Signs blog post “In­vest in new hospi­tals? Re­ally?” (ModernHealth­care.com, Sept. 27), “We al­ready have too many small hospi­tals with low vol­ume, poor out­comes and ‘hob­by­ist’ sur­geons who do a hand­ful of pro­ce­dures per year,” said Jon Skin­ner, a pro­fes­sor of eco­nom­ics at the Dart­mouth In­sti­tute for Health Pol­icy & Clin­i­cal Prac­tice. “One thing we know is that low vol­ume is bad for pa­tients.”

With all due re­spect, that com­ment is both of­fen­sive and wrong. I would steer you to a May 2016 JAMA ar­ti­cle, “As­so­ci­a­tion of hospi­tal crit­i­cal ac­cess sta­tus with sur­gi­cal out­comes and ex­pen­di­tures among Medi­care ben­e­fi­cia­ries,” as well as re­cent data from the CMS. You want to talk about ru­ral qual­ity and ac­cess? Give me a call.

Alan Mor­gan

CEO

Na­tional Ru­ral Health As­so­ci­a­tion

Lea­wood, Kan.

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