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Hospital Compare – at medicare.gov (all states) Hospital star ratings, complications Editor's Pick

Federal government gives 1 to 5 stars and compares hospital ratings for heart attack (AMI), heart failure, pneumonia, COPD, stroke, hip & knee, preventing surgery infections, timeliness of Emergency (ER) dept., use of medical imaging in 2017 – 2018. Includes death rate comparisons from heart failure, heart attack, pneumonia, COPD, stroke, CABG; and return to hospital (readmission) rates. Click on Timely & Effective Care, or Complications. Shows patient satisfaction HCAHPS ratings from 2017 – 2018. Some info on colonoscopies and cataracts. Editor’s Pick because the government standardized broad ratings for all hospitals, and most ratings are based on more than just Medicare patients. However, it is still complicated. Small volume hospitals will not show data for some measures. Be sure to click on Show Graphs or View More Details. Today’s stars may reflect older data than shown at the website. Read the fine print

NCQA Health Insurance Plan Ratings and Report Card 2018-2019 Editor's Pick

Compare quality ratings for HMOs and PPO health insurance plans. Aetna, Anthem Blue Cross, Cigna, Humana, Kaiser, United Healthcare – they’re all here, as are many non-profit regional plans. Star ratings and number of enrollees shown for accredited commercial, Medicare and Medicaid plans. Two private commercial plans received the highest possible 5-point rating:  Group Health Cooperative of South Central Wisconsin, and Kaiser Foundation Mid-Atlantic States.  NCQA (National Committee for Quality Assurance) is a private nonprofit organization that sets standards for quality of care and service that health plans provide to their members. NCQA Accreditation is a nationally recognized seal of approval. Updated for 2019

Nursing Home Compare (all states) www.medicare.gov 2019 Editor's Pick

Free 5-star ratings from Nursing Home Compare for nursing homes that are Medicare or Medicaid certified and provide skilled nursing care. Quality ratings, nursing staffing and CNA hours per resident day, and results from survey inspection reports are updated with 2018 data. If you cannot find the nursing home you’re interested in, the facility might not accept Medicare and Medicaid patients. Check your state reports for additional information. Consumers can also ask the nursing facility to share their reports on resident and family satisfaction. Good nursing homes welcome your inquiry

Compare Hospitals at Why Not the Best? (IPRO) Editor's Pick

WhyNotTheBest.org is a helpful website to check hospital ratings, although data are a bit old. Shows trends and in many cases which hospital has the best performance in the country. Currently using 2015-2016 data for most measures. Some measure are older. Heart care, pneumonia, surgery, patient satisfaction, survival rates (mortality) and more. Trends are shown for many hospitals, and you might be able to find Top Performers in the country at this website. Operated by IPRO

Hospital Ratings at HealthGrades (all states) 2018 Editor's Pick

Hospital Ratings (5-star, 3-star, 1-star) for over 30 diseases & inpatient procedures: Stroke, back surgery, COPD, diabetes, gall bladder surgery, bowel obstruction, GI Bleed, hip fracture repair, hip replacement, total knee replacement, prostate removal, TURP, hysterectomy (listed under gynecologic surgeries), respiratory failure, pneumonia, cardiac bypass, heart attack, heart failure, angioplasty, defibrillator, pacemaker, valve surgery, sepsis, pancreatitis, pulmonary embolism, abdominal aneurysm, stomach surgery, peripheral vascular bypass & more. Probably Medicare-only data for most conditions, although some states provide maternity, appendectomy, and bariatric surgery (gastric bypass) data. More extensive list than the federal government’s site. Publicly-traded company. Most data in 2018 ratings are from Medicare patients, from 2014 to 2016. Click on More to see 3-year patient volume, and actual mortality or complication rates compared to predicted. Patient satisfaction ratings (2016-2017 data) are featured by HealthGrades. One hospital at time, unfortunately

California – 2018-19 HMO, PPO, & Medical Group Ratings Report Card Editor's Pick

Two Kaiser Permanente HMO Plans received the highest ratings. The lowest rating went to Aetna Health of California HMO. Compare 10 largest California HMO health insurance plans: Aetna, Anthem Blue Cross HMO, Blue Shield, Cigna, Health Net, Kaiser Permanente Northern and Southern CA regions, Sharp Health Plan, United Healthcare and Western Health Advantage. Compare 6 of the largest PPOs: Aetna, Anthem Blue Cross, Blue Shield, Cigna, Health Net Life Insurance Company, United Healthcare. Clear, simple star system (5 stars = excellent; 4 stars = very good; 3 stars = good, 2 stars = fair; 1 star = poor) used for overall rating. Actual performance scores are not given, but may be available through NCQA. Quality measures (based on HEDIS scores) for asthma, cancer screening, child health, chlamydia screening, diabetes, heart care, maternity care, behavioral and mental health, and other expected care. Member satisfaction stars also shown. Complaint rates reported for health plans in a separate report. Nearly 200 Medical Group ratings also provided by county for the larger groups of doctors. For example, nearly 60 different Kaiser Permanente medical groups are included; Sutter, Scripps, Sharp and many more.  Prepared by the California state Office of the Patient Advocate (OPA), published November 2018.

Florida Health Insurance Plans – Quality Ratings & Satisfaction Editor's Pick

Find Member Satisfaction and quality ratings for cancer screening, diabetes, prenatal care, well child care, children’s dental care, high blood pressure for HMOs, Medicare HMOs and Medicaid. Aetna, AvMed, Better Health, Capital, CIGNA, Clear Health Alliance, Community, Coventry, Florida Health Care, Freedom Health, Health First, Health Options, Humana, Magellan, Molina, Neighborhood, Positive, Prestige, Simply, Staywell, Sunshine, United Healthcare, Children’s Medical Services and others. Data reflect services received in 2017. Search by county. Additional member satisfaction for PPOs including Capital Health (highest member satisfaction), Florida Blue, Golden Rule (lowest member satisfaction), Aetna, Cigna, Humana, United. Easy to read.

Florida Prescription Drug Prices 2019 Editor's Pick

The official Florida Prescription Drug Price website helps consumers easily compare 2019 prices for the 150 most commonly used prescription drugs in FL. Consumer Health Ratings found large price variation among pharmacies. Here’s an example: In  Miami-Dade County, April prices ranged from $42 to $1079 for the same drug Olanzapine (10 mg); similarly Coumadin or Warfarin 2 mg prices ranged from $4 to a $43 per prescription. In other cases, pharmacy prices might be nearly identical to each other. Drugs vary by city, include Abilify, Azor, Byetta, Chantix, Humalog, Januvia, Lunesta, Metoprolol, Nasonex, Nexium, Restasis, Tamiflu and more. One of the few pharmacy cost comparison sites left in the US. Unfortunately high priced, heavily advertised brand names that were the best-selling drugs in 2018 (Humira, Eliquis, Revlimid, Opdivo, Keytruda, Enbrel, Herceptin, Avastin, Rituxan, Xarelto, Eylea, Remicade, Prevnar 13, Stelara, and Lyrica) are not included. Updated monthly.

Government Employee Health Insurance Cost Comparisons (FEHB)

Web site from US Office of Personnel Management (OPM) helps federal employees and others compare the benefits, member satisfaction, and employee costs of up to 4 health insurance plans at one time. Search by zip code; choose local plans and/or national plans. Convenient and current for 2019. The amount that taxpayers and government institutions pay toward the total health care premiums is no longer readily available

Massachusetts Board of Registration in Medicine – Online Physician Profiles Editor's Pick

Massachusetts provides consolidated access to information about the education, training, board certification status, malpractice, discipline and criminal records (if any) of all licensed physicians. Both MD and DO (osteopathic doctors). Mass.gov site is easy to use

Minnesota Nursing Home Report Card Editor's Pick

Hands down, this is the best state report card for nursing homes. Easy to use. Compare nursing homes in whatever zip code region you specify, according to your top 3 favorite criteria. Simple 5-star comparison system. Shows Family Satisfaction, Quality of Life, Quality of Care, Staff turnover & hours of direct care, private rooms and more. MN survey inspection reports are linked. Daily room rates shown for each nursing home, although the case mix table is complicated. Click on the nursing home’s name to get the details. MN Dept. of Health site updated 2019

New York State Hospital Quality Ratings – health.ny.gov

Select NY hospitals to compare in care areas like emergency department waiting time, post-op complications, cardiac, patient satisfaction, readmissions, death rates or infection prevention. Data updated each year, although dates are hard to find (hover over the hospital’s score). Most data are from somewhere between 2016 and 2018. Some measures (e.g. surgery complications and mortality) are older. Services include maternity, and volumes for some types of surgery (e.g. endoscopy, colonoscopy, hernia repair) and procedure counts for MRI, CT, cancer chemotherapy and psych evaluations. New York State Department of Health site NY Health Profiles. Select one hospital at a time. You can select hospitals to compare, to see performance measures side by side.

Pennsylvania Hospital Performance Report 2017 | PHC4 Editor's Pick

Compare PA hospitals on Mortality Rating (relative survival rate), Average Charge (price), and Readmission rates. Sixteen (16) conditions in the pdf reports include heart failure, abnormal heartbeat, heart attack, angioplasty and stent, pneumonia, stroke, laparoscopic gallbladder removal, COPD, colorectal surgical procedures, diabetes, kidney failure, urinary tract infections, sepsis, chest pain, and respiratory failure. Grouped by region. As an example, there were over 68,000 sepsis cases in Pennsylvania in 2016-2017, with an average mortality rate of 9.3%, and average charge close to $56,000; about 18% were readmitted.  Symbols for Mortality ratings can be confusing – a higher mortality rating means worse survival. No orthopedic (hip or knee) surgery included. Data from Oct. 2016 to Sept. 2017, published by the Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council (PHC4), November 2018.

Surgeon Scorecard – Knees, Hips, Gallbladder, Spinal Fusion, Prostate Surgery, Medicare 2015

Compare individual surgeons’ complication rates (risk-adjusted) for Medicare patients having one of 8 types of inpatient surgery: hip or knee replacement, laparoscopic gallbladder removal, cervical (neck) or lumbar spinal fusion (either posterior or anterior technique), and prostate resection or removal. Analysis by ProPublica looked at billing records from 2009 to 2013. Numbers of cases shown are MEDICARE-ONLY (although the column title omits that point), and require at least 20 cases for a doctor’s rate to be shown. Physician’s rate combines his/her Medicare cases at all hospitals. Website was somewhat controversial in 2015. Tool is easy to use; data have not been updated

Texas – Compare Texas HMOs 2018-2019 – Consumer Ratings (OPIC)

Texas consumer ratings of their health insurance plans and the medical care enrolled members received during 2017. Compare HMO (Health Maintenance Organization) plans for Central Texas, East Texas, Gulf Coast, North TX, Panhandle/Plains area, South Texas, West Texas regions. Includes plans covering Austin, Dallas, Ft. Worth, Houston, San Antonio, Abilene, Amarillo, Lubbock, Waco, Corpus Christi and Rio Grande. Satisfaction ratings and market share are shown for Humana, Aetna Health, Christus (the highest rated plan and the highest rated health care), FIRSTCARE, Memorial Hermann, Scott and White Health Plan, Community First, HMO Blue Texas, Cigna and United Healthcare. Report by Texas OPIC (Office of Public Insurance Counsel)

Vermont – 2019 Hospital Report Cards (Act 53)

Vermont calls these ratings Act 53 report cards, in honor of legislation passed in 2003, requiring VT hospitals to publish annual community reports about hospital quality, safety, financial health, costs for services and more. This government site links the data, including outpatient prices.  See if your hospital is average, above average, or below average. Health conditions include heart care, pneumonia, surgical infection prevention, central line associated bloodstream infections, hysterectomy infections, knee replacement and hip replacement infection rates, volume and death rates for resection of esophagus or of pancreas (usually for cancer), abdominal aneurysm repair (AAA – listed as fix the artery), readmissions & more. This site permits access to Quality Ratings, Survival Rate information, links to patient satisfaction and current medical prices all on the same web page for easy access. Nurse staffing also available. 2017-2018 data for quality; 2017 information on prices for some procedures, 2019 prices (through Sept. 30) for other services such as physician office visits. Published May 2019.

Wisconsin PricePoint – Outpatient & Ambulatory Surgery Cost

Compare outpatient and ambulatory surgery volume and charges for colonoscopy, cataracts, eardrum surgery, shoulder or knee surgery, carpal tunnel surgery, removal of tonsils & adenoids, appendectomy, breast biopsy, endoscopy, gallbladder (cholecystectomy), upper GI, heart catheterization and more. Compare hospitals and surgical centers. Typical (median) price in county and statewide Wisconsin median prices shown, but no dates are provided for reference. Prices exclude surgeon and other doctors’ fees which may double the numbers you see here

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