Masters Thesis

Comparison of quality measures for acute care hospitals in Bakersfield

Over the period of last fifteen years, quality indicators and performance measures of health care quality have undergone many updates. The measures that were the core quality measures once were overachieved by hospitals and are not the performance indicators any more. Consumers are swamped by the enormous information that is available publicly on hospital’s quality and yet might not be able to reach a conclusion when it comes to choosing a health care facility for care. The goal of this study was to identify what are the important measures of quality from a consumer standpoint, and assess how the local hospitals are performing on those measures. To achieve this goal the researcher looked at the factors that drive hospitals’ performance, measures that directly affect hospital’s ranking and public ratings. The study concluded that although hospital’s ranking and public reporting of hospital’s performance offers consumers a reference point, it should just be the starting point and not the end decision. The factors that the user should consider includes providers, the infrastructure, the support staff, access to care, insurance coverage and cost of the service rendered at that facility. The recommendations suggest forming a centralized body that synchronizes quality measures reported by different agencies, aligning those measures with patient’s expectation of quality, and public reporting of the performance report of hospitals in a local newspaper for easy accessibility of information to the common user.

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