Medicare Discloses Hospitals’ Bonuses, Penalties Based On Quality

Kaiserhealthnews.org:  By Jordan Rau, KHN Staff Writer, DEC 20, 2012

Medicare on Thursday disclosed bonuses and penalties for nearly 3,000 hospitals as it ties almost $1 billion in payments to the quality of care provided to patients.

The revised payments, which will begin in January, mark the federal government’s most extensive effort yet to hold hospitals financially accountable for what happens to patients. In what amounts to a nationwide competition, Medicare compared hospitals on how faithfully they followed rudimentary standards of care and how patients rated their experiences.

In many regions, the hospitals that did the best are not the ones with the most outsized reputations, but regional and community hospitals, according to government records. New York-Presbyterian in Manhattan and Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, both dominant hospitals in their cities, will have their payments reduced. Other leading names in the hospital industry, including the Cleveland Clinic and Intermountain Medical Center in Utah, will receive bonuses, although not the largest in their regions. Read more