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Consumer Reports Launches Online Hospital Ratings for More Than 3,400 U.S. Hospitals
Date:8/3/2009

Ratings Allow Consumers to Compare Quality of Care at Local Hospitals

YONKERS, N.Y., Aug. 3 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- For the first time, Consumer Reports will provide patient satisfaction Ratings for more than 3,400 hospitals across the U.S. Subscribers to www.ConsumerReportsHealth.org will be able to look up their local hospitals to see how they stack up and the types of challenges that patients have experienced there. CR notes several areas of concern at hospitals nationwide; the vast majority of hospitals received the worst Ratings for communication about new medications and discharge planning.

Consumer Reports' new Ratings demonstrate substantial differences in quality of care across the U.S., including a link between patient satisfaction and intensity of care. It may come as a surprise to consumers that patients can be more satisfied in hospitals that tend to provide conservative care.

"Intensity of care is a critical part of the equation for consumers because it has many implications -- if you land in a hospital that is aggressive, that will mean frequent diagnostic tests and doctor visits, more reliance on specialists instead of primary-care doctors, prolonged hospital stays, more days in the ICU, and higher out-of-pocket expenditures, without necessarily improving outcomes," said Dr. John Santa, M.D., M.P.H., director of the Consumer Reports Health Ratings Center. Those actions may potentially lead to an increased risk of complications and hospital acquired infections.

Intensity of Care and Patient Satisfaction

Published by the Consumer Reports Health Ratings Center, the online Ratings are based on patient surveys collected by the federal government's Hospital Consumer Asse
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SOURCE Consumer Reports
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