Five-Star Nursing Homes and Other Healthcare Report Cards

Tuesday, June 24th, 2008
This post was written by Melanie Matthews

School’s almost out, and we’re awaiting final report cards at my house. In this week’s news, report cards also went out to many hospitals, health plans and nursing homes. The AMA issued its first National Health Insurer Report Card on claims processing to Medicare and seven national commercial health insurers, in an effort to hold health insurance companies accountable for “timeliness, transparency and accuracy of claims processing.” Also, CMS reported dramatic improvements in the performances of the 250 hospitals in its Premier Hospital Quality Incentive Demonstration (HQID). The 112 top performers share $7 million in incentive payments for “substantial and continual advancement in quality of care.”

We also learned that nursing homes will be subject to greater scrutiny by CMS, which by year’s end will activate a five-star system on its Nursing Home Compare Web site to rank quality of care. CMS already assigns stars to health and prescription drug plans available to Medicare beneficiaries.

Depending on the grades, some summer work may be in order for hospitals, insurers and nursing homes that don’t want to be left behind.

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