Hospitals’ overall patient satisfaction scores have improved following the start of the initial value-based purchasing (VBP) performance period in July 2011, according to Press Ganey. This finding indicates that hospitals are better prepared to meet the new VBP criteria that affects their performance-based Medicare payments, Press Ganey officials say.
Key results from the findings include the following:
- In July 2011, hospitals had an average increase in the category "overall rating of the hospital" of almost three-quarters of a point (0.7), compared to the previous month of June.
- From July through October 2011, since the VBP performance period began, the overall hospital performance score continued to improve and remained higher than the previous year.
- The average overall hospital rating in October 2011 was 0.9 percentage points higher than the average score for April 2010 through March 2011.
The average "likelihood to recommend" score for hospitals was 1.5 points higher in October 2011, compared to April 2010 through March 2011 results, nearly half a million more patients more than in the year ending in March 2011.
The findings, from 44 percent of U.S. hospitals participating in CMS’ HCAHPS survey, are based on proprietary patient discharge data through October 2011, the most recent available. The data supplements older, publicly available data in order to provide current insight into patients’ view of hospital care. By comparison, the most recent publicly available data released by CMS on its Hospital Compare web site on Jan. 26, 2011 covers patients discharged April 1, 2010 through March 31, 2011. It does not cover the VBP performance period, so it does not allow for analysis of how the initiation of VBP has impacted hospitals nationwide, Press Ganey officials say.
According to Press Ganey, the sharp rise in patient ratings is similar to the increase seen after CMS initiated a national consumer awareness campaign about the HCAHPS survey in May 2008.
CMS is scheduled to release its July 2011 HCAHPS data in July 2012 in the form of an annualized score. This public data set will not allow for analysis of seasonal trends or month-to-month comparisons.
The HCAHPS survey is a national, standardized, publicly reported survey of patients' perspectives of hospital care. The most recent HCAHPS data from CMS is available on the Hospital Compare web site and covers discharges through March 2011.
Source: Press Ganey, February 1, 2012
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