Nov 15, 2013 — Medicare has tied incentive payments and penalties to two-dozen quality measurements, including surveys of patient satisfaction and death rates. More than 1,200 hospitals are receiving bonuses. But more hospitals are being paid less for each Medicare patient they treat for the year that began Oct. 1.
Oct 15, 2013 — Running a hospital that scores well on keeping more patients alive or providing extensive charity care doesn't translate into a compensation bump for top executives. Nonprofit hospitals have been under scrutiny for paying high salaries to chief executives while skimping on benefits for their communities.
May 29, 2013 — Waste and aggressive treatment might not explain Medicare cost variations after all. Differing levels of health by region could account for most of the cost variation, an analysis finds.
May 10, 2013 — A company that got its start assessing the risks of ocean-going vessels now checks U.S. hospitals for quality. Known as DNV, the firm is bringing competition to an area of health care that obsesses insiders yet is little known by patients.
Apr 26, 2013 — How hard can it be to measure the health of a population? Oregon is finding out it's difficult to decide even what to track. But the state received almost $2 billion in federal funds to improve the health of its residents and to cut costs. The state faces substantial fines if it can't prove it has done the job.
Dec 5, 2012 — The traditions of medical education die hard. Many doctors in training still work extreme hours, despite rules that limit the lengths of shifts for medical residents. One residency director calls for doctors educated under the old system to stop bashing the younger generation for being soft.
Nov 20, 2012 — More than 40 percent of surgical complications occur after patients are at home. The solution for the problem isn't keeping patients in the hospital longer, researchers say. Better instructions to patients and improved monitoring could help.
Oct 30, 2012 — More intense care can translate into worse, and more expensive, care at the end of life. So, the thinking goes, doctors who train at hospitals with better and more efficient care will be in better shape to become future leaders.
Oct 29, 2012 — Are you prepared for some unorthodox audio from an ink-stained wretch still working on the transition to online journalism from print? If so, click through to listen to Shots, the podcast. This episode covers multivitamins and cancer, health report cards and how Americans feel about retail health clinics.
Oct 3, 2012 — Just before new penalties kicked in for hospitals that readmit too many Medicare patients, the government discovered that the data it used to were out of date. The changes from the error are tiny, amounting on average to a fraction of a percent for most of the affected hospitals.