Primary Listings

Vermont – 2017 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. 2015-2016 data for quality; 2015 and 2017 information on prices

Vermont – 2018 Outpatient Diagnostic Test Prices Editor's Pick

Compare 2018 hospital prices for lab work, x-ray & imaging tests. MRI charges averaged $2358 [pelvis angiography] to $4647 [MRI-pelvis, multiple sequences] with physician fee. CT scan of head, neck, face, chest, spine, pelvis, abdomen (overall CT average $1878 to $2932); digital screening mammograms average $602 with physician charge. Specific test prices for urinalysis, glucose, Metabolic Panel ($112 average), lipid panel ($98), PSA (average $151, range 42 to 304), CBC (range $25 to $126), strep test group A (range from $43 to $175), Pap test (average 121 to 152), pregnancy test (range $21 to $103), blood typing, OB ultrasound (average $774), x-rays, Cardiology EKG or echocardiogram, PT evaluation ($304 to 338 average) and more. CPT codes listed. Probably the best State site for hospital outpatient diagnostic test cost comparison. Some average prices have gone down this year, which may support useful price comparisons among hospitals. Prices good through Sept. 2018, so add inflation to update. Tables 3B through 3I

Vermont – Compare Health Insurance Plan Ratings 2014 (pdf)

Compare Blue Cross Blue Shield of VT (Health Partnership and Freedom Plan), CIGNA, MVP, and The Vermont Health Plan BlueCare on consumer and patient experiences; how well the plans do cancer screening, flu shot and other immunizations, antibiotic use in kids, prenatal care, asthma & bronchitis care, mental health treatment, back pain evaluation, alcohol dependence and COPD care. State report December 2014 by Dept. of Banking, Insurance uses 2014 CAHPS and 2013 HEDIS data; 4 pages. No updates available for 2018.

Vermont – Compare Hospital ER Prices (2018) Editor's Pick

Compare published prices for hospital Emergency Room visits, for all 14 hospitals in VT. Average is $328 ($228 for hospital and $101 for doctor, Level 1) to $1769 per visit ($1208 hospital, $560 doctor, Level 5), depending on level of complexity. Both facility and physician charges are shown – an amazing show of leadership in price transparency. Prices do NOT include lab tests, imaging tests or procedures during the ER visit. Prices were good from October 2017 to September 2018; they increased 3.5% on the low level 1, to 4.6% from the prior year on level 5 visits. Wide variation among hospitals. Still awaiting new prices for 2019

Vermont – Hospital Outpatient Surgery Prices, 2015 (pdf)

Table 2A lets you compare average gross charge (the closest you will get to average cost) for most common outpatient surgical procedures at 14 general hospitals in VT. Prices for procedures such as cataract surgery (average $5971), upper GI endoscopy ($3296), knee cartilage surgery ($8951 average), arthrocentesis joint aspiration ($774), gall bladder removal (average $12,804), breast biopsy (avg. $4422), other biopsies, ear tubes (average $3400), tonsillectomy ($6730), diagnostic cardiac cath ($22,834), bunion removal (11,501 avg; range $6401 in Springfield to $23,707 at Copley), colonoscopy $12,804 average, hernia repair $11,221, and many more procedures; 12-month avg. charges ending Sept. 30, 2015, DO NOT include the surgeon or other physician fees. As with all of Vermont’s reports, the font size is about as small as you can get. More than two years old, published 2017. Table 2B shows how many of those procedures the hospital did

Vermont – Inpatient Hospital Average Prices, 2015 (pdf)

2017 Hospital Report Card shows average prices (gross charges) for each VT hospital’s most frequent inpatient admissions – includes newborn delivery (nomal newborn $2920; newborn with medical problems = $4984), cesarean section ($15,000 to $19,000), average vaginal delivery $8563 without complications; pneumonia, total hip or knee replacement (average $42,898), depression  (average $11,778), psychoses such as schizophrenia (average $31,105), COPD & emphysema, heart failure, chest pain, rehabilitation, heart rhythm problems, back problems, kidney or urinary tract infection, and other hospital stays. All common hospital admissions except newborns averaged more than $10,300 statewide. Spinal fusion about $64,000. Compare costs on nearly 60 different types of cases, listed by MS-DRG. Links to hospital discount policies for consumers with cost concerns; 2014-2015 average charges

Vermont – Inpatient Hospital Market Share 2015 – Counts

State of Vermont (Act 53 Hospital reports) lists volume of inpatient hospital admissions for each VT hospital, along with the average price (charge) for the top 50 types of admission (by MS-DRG). See Financial and Pricing Information – Counts. 2017 report cards show counts to calculate market share for year ending Sept. 30, 2015

Vermont – Medical Practice Board – Physician Profiles Search

Provided by the Vermont Department of Health. Covers MDs only. Osteopathic doctors must be verified at the state Office of Professional Regulation (see next listing). Extensive profiles including years in practice, malpractice items, education, training and board certification

Vermont – Office of Professional Regulation – for Osteopaths and other professionals

To verify license information on osteopathic physicians, chiropractors, nurses, nursing home administrators, psychologists, pharmacists, social workers and more, you can try this site through the Vermont Secretary of State. Select Osteopath to search by doctor’s (DO) name.

Vermont – Outpatient Surgery Market Share 2015 – counts (pdf)

Find out how many outpatient surgeries (selected types) are done at each Vermont hospital, and the average price statewide (average gross charge) for period of Oct 2014 to Sept. 2015. Prices do not include physician charges. Volumes include cataract surgery, endoscopy, cholecystectomy (gall bladder surgery), colonoscopy, ear tubes (myringotomy), tonsillectomy, bunionectomy, circumcision, breast biopsy, outpatient cardiac catheterization, hernia repair and more. Part of the State Act 53 Hospital Community Report series, published 2017

Vermont Hospitals – 2017 Financial Information

Detailed VT hospital financial comparisons showing 2015 and 2016 actual results, plus 2017 budget. In addition to typical financial statement items (revenue, expense, profit, assets, liabilities), staffing information, capital expenditures planned through 2020, inpatient volume, average length of stay, detailed financial ratios and other operating statistics. See Tables 4 to 14

Vermont Prescription Drug Price Finder (Discontinued)

About 90 prescription drugs used to be listed at this Vermont government site (Office of Attorney General of VT), where consumers could compare medication drug prices. Launched in 2007, unfortunately, some time after 2010 the Drug Price Finder service was discontinued. Formerly at atg.state.vt.us

VT Hospital Physician Office Visit Prices 2017

Compare what hospitals in Vermont charged for physician office visits in 2016-2017. For example, code 99213 averages $170 (range $75 at Rutland to $533 at North Country) for an established patient; code 99214 average price is $228. New patient prices also shown. If non-hospital medical groups exist in VT, their fees are not shown. Provided by state of Vermont; prices good thru September 2017

County Health Rankings 2019 – All States Editor's Pick

Compare your county health status to the rest of your state, on the latest results for smoking, obesity, alcohol use, preventable hospital stays; primary care, dentist and mental health provider rates, percent uninsured (as of 2016), alcohol impaired driving deaths, severe housing problems, social associations, and much more. Very interesting information on health behaviors and health outcomes. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Univ. of WI Population Health Institute

Health, United States Chartbook for 2017 Editor's Pick

Annual report on trends in health statistics from the publication Health, United States, 2017 edition, by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). Report chartbook contains text and figures showing long term trends in the health and healthcare of Americans; most data to 2016; 114 tables; 30 figures. Published  by CDC 2018

Kaiser State Health Facts: Individual State Profiles

Compare states on health status, health insurance coverage, costs, minority health, and more. From the Kaiser Family Foundation; Dates vary from 2014 to 2017

State Scorecard 2017: Access, Quality, Costs, Health

All states are ranked by The Commonwealth Fund in this State Scorecard on Health System Performance – Aiming Higher. Interactive database to see just your state. Better yet, check out who is at the top of the list: Vermont, Minnesota, Hawaii, Rhode Island and Massachusetts, Colorado and Iowa. Data periods vary; most are current to 2015; one measure to 2013; 44 measures; published March 2017

State-by-State Snapshots (AHRQ)

State Snapshots show strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for improvement in health and healthcare, based on data from the National Healthcare Quality Report (NHQR). How does your state rate? Updated annually by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, although dates are not clear unless you drill down to the specific measure

Other Helpful Listings

Accredited Ambulatory Health Care and Surgery Centers (AAAHC)

The nonprofit Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC) currently accredits over 6000 organizations in a wide variety of ambulatory health care settings, including ambulatory and office based outpatient surgery centers, community health centers, endoscopy centers, lithotripsy centers, some managed health plans, medical group practices, retail clinics, urgent care centers, specialty services, and workplace clinics.  (See also Joint Commission site for hospital-owned ambulatory surgery center accreditation.)

Accredited Chest Pain Centers – American College of Cardiology

List of Accredited Chest Pain Centers – some with PCI (percutaneous cardiac intervention). Must meet emergency department requirements and standards for timely diagnosis and treatment. List is interactive by state or type of accreditation, including A Fib and cardiac cath. Shows location of each hospital. Provided by the nonprofit American College of Cardiology (ACC)

Accredited Healthcare Facilities – Joint Commission Accreditation (all states) Editor's Pick

The Joint Commission (formerly JCAHO – Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations) accredits hospitals and other healthcare organizations. Quality Check provides accreditation and comparison information for hospitals, behavioral health care, home health/hospice, laboratories, some nursing homes (called nursing care centers) & assisted living centers, and other health care services. Click on View Report and National Quality Improvement Goals to see actual scores for acute care hospitals 2017-2018

Acupuncture Referral Service – Find an acupuncturist

List of acupuncturists by state and country – note, many people are listed twice. Besides the US and Puerto Rico, professionals in Canada, Australia, UK (England, United Kingdom), India, and other countries in Europe, Asia and the Middle East are included in the directory. Interesting observation: no acupuncturists in China are listed

Affordable Clinics for Primary Care, Mental Health and Dentists (HRSA) Editor's Pick

List of federally funded community health centers that provide primary care, pregnancy care, physician office visits, immunizations, dental care, mental health and other services, regardless of ability to pay. Search by state, county or zip code. Every state appears to have special clinics for those without insurance. Federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) have sliding fee scales for people up to 200% of poverty level. Perhaps one of the best healthcare programs in the United States, and not that many people know about it.

ALS Association’s Certified Centers and Clinics

The ALS Association is a non-profit dedicated to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (“Lou Gehrig’s disease”). They select, certify and support regional ALS centers and clinics they recognize as the best in the field; and which have neurological diagnostics and imaging, and available certain on-site licensed and certified ancillary services

AMA Doctor Finder Editor's Pick

American Medical Association site provides information on members of the AMA first, but also lists information on non-member physicians. Site reports over 814,000 physicians listed, and if they are members of the AMA, shows a detailed profile with board certification as well as training. Click on non-members to see full list.  May show whether physician is Board-certified or not.

Ambulatory Surgery Average Charges in U.S. Hospitals, 2007

Find average prices for about 80 outpatient ambulatory surgery procedures done in hospitals in 2007 (excluding surgeon’s or other physician fees.) Average colonoscopy & biopsy price then was $2369; upper GI endoscopy $3131; cataract & lens was $4870; tonsillectomy $5286; knee cartilage $7357; hernia repair $8187; outpatient gallbladder removal (cholecystectomy) $10,838; breast biopsy $3863; lumpectomy $7458; ear tube surgery (myringotomy) $3547; D&C $6366; arthroscopy $8970; incontinence procedures $9929; vericose veins $8459; bunionectomy $7699; wrist fracture $7807; $4770 for circumcision. Consumers will need to adjust the 2007 prices to estimate 2019 costs; add at least 40% for a rough estimate. Overall average was $6100, compared to nearly $40,000 for inpatient surgery. AHRQ Statistical Brief #86 published February 2010 unfortunately still has not been updated. No longer Editor’s Pick

American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) – What is Your Doctor’s Specialty? Editor's Pick

ABMS is a highly-regarded, not-for-profit organization comprising 24 medical specialty boards, that oversees physician certification in the US. See whether your doctor is board-certified in his/her specialty (such as Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, Family Medicine, OB/GYN, Surgery, Orthopedics, Emergency Medicine, Radiology, etc.) and in his/her subspecialty (such as Cardiovascular Disease, Geriatric Medicine, Oncology, Endocrinology, Neonatal Medicine, Pulmonary Disease, etc.) Click on Is Your Doctor Board Certified on the certificationmatters.org page (sponsored by abms.org). Registration (free) is no longer required, but well worth it if required in the future. We encourage visitors to use the site

American Dental Association (ADA) Directory

Database to help you find a dentist who belongs to the American Dental Association. Shows only name, location and contact information

American Hospital Directory – Outpatient Charges and Volumes (ahd.com) Editor's Pick

Charges and average costs for the 20 outpatient Ambulatory Payment Classifications (APCs) representing the highest Medicare outpatient payment to each hospital (excluding critical access hospitals). List varies by hospital. May include: cost for colonoscopy, laparoscopy, CT, MRI, clinic and emergency (ED or ER) visits, x-ray tests, upper GI, lower GI endoscopy, arthroscopy, cataract with lens, angiography, echocardiography, hernia repair, infusion therapy, nerve injection, observation services, outpatient cardiac catheterization, ultrasound. Scroll to bottom of the hospital page to Outpatient Utilization Statistics. Some rural critical access hospitals may not show any outpatient test and visit prices. Also shown: inpatient market share by local zip code; net income. Link is to the Free Hospital Information

Assisted Living, Home Health, Nursing Home Average Costs 2018 (Genworth) Editor's Pick

Typical cost for home health aide in a licensed agency was $22 per hour nationwide (median). A private one bedroom Assisted Living facility cost more than $48,000 per year ($4000 per month). Semi-private nursing home median room rate was $245 per day (more than $89,000 for a full year); $275 per day for a private room. Rates vary greatly.  In Alaska, the median price for a private room was a whopping $907 daily rate. All states listed; average adult day care and homemaker rates also shown. Survey by Genworth Financial (CareScout) in May and June 2018; published October 2018

Average Total Premiums and Employee Contribution, Selected Cities, 2017 Editor's Pick

The 2017 average health insurance premiums and amount of employee contribution for single, single-plus-one, and family coverage by selected cities and metropolitan regions, or remainder of state shown in this MEPS table of costs for private-sector businesses. Average single premiums in many parts of the country now exceed $7000 or even $8000 (Alaska). Lowest rate $4901 was in Provo-Orem UT.  Average employee-plus-one premiums were over $10,000 across the US. Family premiums were best in San Antonio-New Braunfels TX at $13,813; but topped $22,700 in Anchorage, Alaska. Average Single contribution was under $2000 across the US. Coverage levels and plan design will vary

Behavioral Health Facility Locator Editor's Pick

Find a treatment clinic or facility for mental health, alcohol, drug, and substance abuse treatment. Search up to a 200-mile radius or more, including crossing state lines. The Detailed search allows specifying outpatient, inpatient, residential treatment, or a mix of mental health and substance abuse services, and permits a full national search. Site by the federal Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

Blue Distinction Centers: Cardiac, Cancer, Hip, Knee, Maternity, Spine, Bariatric Surgery, Organ Transplants

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies have designated national Blue Distinction Centers meeting their standards and selection criteria for bariatric weight loss surgery, cardiac (heart) care, organ transplants (e.g. adult and pediatric bone marrow/stem cell, heart, lung, liver, pancreas (adult only) transplants ), total knee and hip replacement, cancer care, maternity care and spine surgery. Quality criteria can be found from the home page. Fertility care distinction to launch Jan. 1, 2019. Interactive database; updated 2018

CareChex America’s Top Quality Hospitals 2019

Lists of top 10% hospitals in specialties such as bariatric surgery, cancer care, cardiac surgery, inpatient gall bladder surgery, GI care, general surgery, hip fractures, hip or knee joint replacement, organ transplants, spinal fusion, stroke care, and more. Top hospitals listed by nation, state or region.Categories include Medical Excellence, Patient Safety and Patient Satisfaction. Consumers can choose Medical Excellence results for Overall Surgical Care only. 2019 report covers Medicare claims data and HCAHPS patient satisfaction from 2014 to 2016, or in some cases to 2017. Announcing award-winning hospitals may require a license fee to be paid. CareChex is a division of Quantros, a for-profit software solutions company, which appears to be a competitor to HealthGrades

Certified Mammography Facilities

Searchable list of nearly 9000 mammography facilities by zip code or state that are certified by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or Certifying State as meeting baseline Mammography Quality Standards for equipment, personnel and practices. Use the complete state list (sort by city) if you want a mammogram in another zip code – or you will likely miss some nearby facilities. As of May 1, 2018, just over half of facilities had been inspected, and nearly 87% had no violations, which was a little lower than last year.

CMS Public List of Nursing Homes with Serious Quality Problems (2019) Editor's Pick

CMS lists nursing homes in any state and District of Columbia that have a history of serious quality problems. These Special Focus Facilities (SFF) have been officially entered into the federal government’s SFF program to monitor care. Homes on the list may have a history of “yo-yo” compliance, with a good survey followed by substandard quality on the next, thus unable to sustain good care. Some nursing homes are listed as Showing Improvement or having graduated out of the program. Updated January 17, 2019

Commission on Cancer Hospital Locator – Accredited Cancer Programs

American College of Surgeons offers the Commission on Cancer – Find Cancer Centers or Surgeons – Search by zip code (or city and state) and up to a 100 mile driving distance. Facilities are accredited by the Commission on Cancer (CoC) of the American College of Surgeons. Accreditation of a cancer center is based on ability to comply with established CoC standards

Compare Community Health Center ratings

Find performance levels of nearly 1400 community health centers by state, on clinical measures: diabetes, hypertension, prenatal care, low birth weight, asthma, childhood immunizations, depression screening, weight management, dental and cervical cancer screening. UDS data from 2017

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

Cost of Assisted Living, Home Health Aides, Nursing Homes (2015 Northwestern)

Northwestern Mutual surveyed assisted living facilities, home health agencies and Medicare-certified nursing homes in all states and DC in 2015. Average rate for assisted living was $4383 per month ($52,591 per year). Average daily rate for nursing home private room was $273 per day; home health aides averaged $26 per hour, but ranged from $18 per hour to $43/hr. depending on city

Dartmouth Atlas of Health Care

The project, run by Center for the Evaluative Clinical Sciences at Dartmouth Medical School, highlights the wide variations in how health care is delivered across the United States. Online tool provides comparisons by geographic region (state, HSAs or HRR) for Medicare healthcare use (data through 2015). While the tool is relatively easy to use, the conceptual understanding of the reports requires technical sophistication

Dialysis Facility Compare from medicare.gov Editor's Pick

Compare services and ratings on kidney dialysis facilities in any state or US territory. Quality measures show relative survival among facilities and quality of care provided to Medicare patients at hospital-sponsored centers, nonprofit and for-profit dialysis centers. Resources on kidney failure and end stage renal disease (ESRD) also linked

Directories (MedlinePlus) Editor's Pick

This may be the only directory mega-list you will ever need. Directory links for doctors, dentists, hospitals, chiropractors, psychologists, hospice programs, and more. Extensive list of directories, although some sites only list those who are members of their association, and do not list others who may be licensed in that field. Specialized directories (e.g. Find an Eye MD, Directory of Asthma Camps, Sleep Centers, or Alzheimer’s Disease Research Centers) can also be located here. Five pages of listings

Directory of America’s Hospitals: State-by-State Hospital Index Editor's Pick

Comprehensive index of over 6000 hospitals prepared jointly by the American Hospital Association and US News & World Report. Search by location. Descriptive information, and links to hospitals’ websites. Includes Guam, Puerto Rico. Well-maintained site

Doctor and Dentist Ratings and Reviews

Patients may rate anyone called Doctor (such as chiropractors and dentists) in the US and selected countries at this site: RateMDs.com. As of May 2018, few physicians had more than 30 patient ratings. Most physicians only have one patient rating. Doctors are rated on their staff, their punctuality, helpfulness and knowledge. Unable to sort list by rankings or number of ratings. Consumers may add a comment. Be VERY CAUTIOUS in using these ratings as the results may NOT be valid.

Estimates of Uninsured in Each County, US Census Bureau Editor's Pick

Estimates of the number and percent uninsured under age 65, by state and county for 2017, provided by the U.S. Census Bureau. Small Area Health Insurance Estimates (SAHIE) released April 2019. Once you’ve located your counties of interest, click on it to see the actual numbers and recent trends. Remember, 2014 was the first year subsidized insurance was available on the health insurance exchange. Uninsured rates have declined since then.

Fertility Clinic Success Rates – 2016 ART Report (CDC) Editor's Pick

Find out about ART clinics (Assisted Reproductive Technology) in the US and Puerto Rico, in this 588-page report by the CDC in conjunction with Reproductive Medicine societies. Shows success rates by age of woman, and both fresh and frozen embryo transfers (nondonor and donor eggs). One-page summaries for each of 463 fertility clinics reporting 2016 data. Nationally, for women under age 35, 45.7% of fresh embryo transfers from fresh nondonor eggs resulted in live births, with 49.4% of frozen embryos from nondonor eggs resulting in live births. Success rates decline with age of woman. With the less common donor eggs, about 56% of frozen embryo transfers resulted in pregnancies, with nearly 45% of transfers resulting in live births. In evaluating fertility clinics, consumers can see how large or small the reproductive program is in any state. Pub. Oct. 2018

Find a Doctor at Physician Compare

Federal government website at medicare.gov lists many physicians by city (the zip code feature is not reliable yet) and specialty, including podiatry. Not too much information, usually less than you get at a state’s licensing site. Maybe in the future it will contain useful quality comparisons. In addition, not all licensed physicians are included. Psychologists, social workers, therapists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants & audiologists are not included

Find a Plastic Surgeon (ASAPS)

Use the online directory to find a board-certified plastic surgeon for your plastic surgery such as breast augmentation or breast reduction, eyelid surgery, facelift, laser hair removal, liposuction, nose reshaping (rhinoplasty) or tummy tuck. Web site by the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS)

Find an Aging Life Care Professional

Search for what is here referred to as an Aging Life Care Professional (formerly geriatric care manager). The Aging Life Care Association was formerly the National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers, Inc. This national directory is easy to use. Credentials of members listed will vary widely. The credentials of the Advanced Professionals may be the most useful. Not all areas of the US are covered.

Find an Oncologist American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO)

Interactive database to help you find a board-certified physician with specialties in the specific type of cancer expertise you’re interested in, or types of oncology, tumors, etc. From the American Society of Clinical Oncology (cancer.net) ASCO website

Find an Orthopedic Foot and Ankle MD Physician (AOFAS)

Members of the American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society are listed in this searchable database. Only doctor’s name and contact information available. Check other sources for education and experience

Find an Orthopedic Surgeon (Orthopaedist)

Find an orthopedic surgeon anywhere in the US. Easy-to-use and informative site, by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS).

Find Health Insurance Options – healthcare.gov

Health insurance exchange website helps small businesses and individuals know what health insurance options are available to them. Search by zip code. Can compare 3 companies or plans at once; approximate monthly premiums are shown. No recommendations or rankings. From HHS at US government

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

GuideStar.org – Form 990 and Executive Compensation, Nonprofits Editor's Pick

Free registration is required to access the basic database, but it is worth your time. GuideStar.org is a go-to source. Most tax-exempt nonprofits file a Form 990 with the IRS, which shows important financial information and executive compensation (or portion of executive comp) received from that organization. GuideStar reports having over 26 million annual searches are conducted on GuideStar.

HCAHPS – Patient Satisfaction Scores for Hospitals 2019 Editor's Pick

Use the Find and Compare hospitals tab to view patient satisfaction survey ratings and opinions by hospital inpatients across the US. Side by side comparisons for 3 hospitals at a time, 2017-2018 data. Find out how many patients would recommend their hospital, and the percent who give their hospital a 9 or 10 score. Voluntary hospital participation. Federal government oversees the HCAHPS survey process (H-Caps) – Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems

Health Insurance Company Rate Increases Editor's Pick

Healthcare.gov reports the final rate increase or decrease for Jan. 1, 2019, by name of health insurance plan for individual policies or small group health plans on the health insurance exchange. Search by state, and use December 2018 to January 2019 to see increases. Updated for 2019

HealthGrades Distinguished Hospitals for Clinical Excellence, 2018

Annual report (Jan. 2018) identifies top-rated distinguished hospitals (top 5%) from evaluating Medicare data from 2014 to 2016; 38 states had hospitals that ranked in the top 5%. Mortality results (survival rates) and complication rates have been factored in for at least 21 procedures and diagnoses such as: heart bypass surgery, pacemaker, defibrillator, heart attack, heart failure, valve replacement, back & neck surgery, carotid surgery, COPD, gall bladder, hip fracture, hip replacement, knee replacement, prostate surgery, TURP, pneumonia, stroke, bowel obstruction, GI bleed, pancreatitis, diabetes hospitalization, pulmonary embolism & sepsis. Hospitals listed by state

HealthInsight: National Rankings for Home Health Agencies (all states) Editor's Pick

Overall composite home health ratings of quality and patient satisfaction based on a summary of 14 or more measures of care in 2017. Health Insight, composed of locally governed organizations in four western states, used the national CMS measures and data to develop a composite ranking. Easier to use than the federal CMS website, but less detail. Interactive tool allows very fast search by state. You must know the name of the agency, since you cannot search by zip code.

HealthInsight: National Rankings for Hospitals (all states)

Overall hospital rankings based on a summary of patient experience (satisfaction), hospital infections, mortality (for heart attack, heart failure and pneumonia) and readmissions. Health Insight, a project of Oregon, Utah, New Mexico and Nevada, developed a helpful composite ranking for nearly every hospital in the nation, using national CMS measures and satisfaction ratings from inpatients. Performance on preventing infections contributes 45% to the hospital’s national ranking. Patient experience results contribute 35% to the score. Results shown by state. Easier to use than the federal HospitalCompare website, but less detail. Dates are from admissions primarily in 2017.

HealthInsight: National Rankings for Nursing Homes (all states)

Overall composite nursing home quality ratings based on a summary of 15 quality measures on over 15,000 nursing homes in 2017-2018. Health Insight, developed by Utah, Nevada, and New Mexico, used the national CMS measures and data to develop a composite ranking. Easier to use than the federal CMS website, but less detail.

Home Health Compare – www.medicare.gov (all states) Editor's Pick

This tool gives detailed information about Medicare-certified home health agencies. Search by county or zip code and see performance scores related to home care services. Find the graphs to compare agencies on measures related to managing daily activities, pain, teaching patients or their caregivers, getting readmitted to the hospital and more. Five star rating system and actual scores. Patient satisfaction ratings included, with a national average of 78% who would recommend their agency. 2016-2017 data

Hospice – Find a Hospice (NHPCO)

The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) is the largest nonprofit membership organization representing hospice and palliative care programs and professionals in the US. Their searchable database helps consumers find a member hospice.

Hospice Compare – medicare.gov (all states) Editor's Pick

Compare up to 3 hospices at a time at Hospice Compare. Site currently reports 7 quality measures related to patient preferences and quality of care in managing pain and treating symptoms, 2018 data. Consumer satisfaction is also reported, including family training and communication, emotional support, pain management, overall rating of the hospice and willingness to recommend the hospice (national average is 85% would recommend).  Site was new in August, 2017, and is updated quarterly by CMS. Search by zip code, state or city. All hospice agencies report, or face financial penalties. Published by the federal government. Excellent website.

Hospital Clinic Visit Charges and Medicare Payments 2016

Find the average price in calendar year 2016 for various types of hospital outpatient charges to Medicare patients. File should show charges by physician name, state average and national average prices. Extremely difficult to use, even if somewhat familiar with using Excel files.  From CMS updated 2019.

Hospital Compare – 30-day Death Rates, Heart Attack, Heart Failure & CABG (2018) Editor's Pick

Federal government site from CMS shows whether hospitals meet expected 30-day survival rates for heart attack and heart failure Medicare cases. National death rates were 13.2% for heart attack, 11.7% for heart failure and 3.1% for CABG (heart bypass) surgery patients. Nationally, these rates improved over the prior 3-year period. Compare hospitals in your area. The number of hospitals that were significantly worse than the national value were 24 for heart attack, 135 for heart failure and 23 for CABG. Results updated 2018, 2014-2017 data

Hospital Compare – 30-day Death Rates, Pneumonia (2018) Editor's Pick

Federal government site from CMS shows whether hospitals met expected 30-day survival rates for Medicare pneumonia patients. The national Risk-Adjusted death rates (mortality rates) were 15.7% for pneumonia. Of US hospitals measured and reported, vast majority were statistically no different than national average; 242 hospitals had worse survival rates. Find pneumonia mortality ratings under Complications and Deaths measures. Results use 2014-2017 data, updated 2018

Hospital Compare – 30-day Death Rates, Stroke (2018) Editor's Pick

Federal government site from CMS shows whether hospitals met expected 30-day survival rates for Medicare stroke patients. The national Risk-Adjusted death rates (mortality rates) were 14.3% for stroke, an improvement over last year’s report. Of US hospitals measured and reported, vast majority were statistically no different than national average; 70 hospitals had worse survival rates. Find stroke mortality ratings under Complications and Deaths measures. Results use 2014-2017 data, updated 2018

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

Hospital Compare 30-day Death Rates, COPD (2018) Editor's Pick

Federal government site from CMS shows whether hospitals met expected 30-day survival rates for Medicare COPD patients. The national Risk-Adjusted death rate (mortality rate) was 8.3% for COPD. Of US hospitals measured and reported, vast majority were statistically no different than national average; 95 hospitals had worse survival rates. Find COPD mortality ratings under Complications and Deaths. Results use 2014-2017 data, updated 2018 and each July

Hospital Infection Prevention Ratings – State-level

Compare hospitals in certain states on how well they prevent infections. Half the states (CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, IL, ME, MD, MA, MN, MO, NH, NJ, NM, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, TN, VT, VA, WA) produce a report on healthcare infections. Consumers Union (the publisher of Consumer Reports), actively promotes public disclosure of hospital infection rates at SafePatientProject.org and tracks state laws on infection reporting. Time periods and reports vary.

Hospital Rates of Scheduling Early C-Sections (Leapfrog)

Compare hospitals on Early Elective Delivery and other Maternity measures. Goal was to reduce rates of scheduling C-Sections before the recommended 39 weeks, without a medically-indicated reason. Medical experts recommend that babies need at least 39 completed weeks to develop fully, which includes having a fully developed brain and other organs. Unfortunately, many hospitals do not report. See Maternity results on the 2018 hospital survey by the Leapfrog Group

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

Individual Annual Health Insurance Premium Cost – 2017 (KFF)

Kaiser Family Foundation reports average health insurance premium cost of $6368 per year (about $531 per month) from 2017 for a single person’s policy. Only five states averaged less than $6000 for a year for one person: AR, GA, ID, MS and NV.  Employee contributions were the lowest in Hawaii at about $56 per month, with employer contributions picking up the rest of the cost. Employees paid on average $146 per month in Massachusetts, the highest contribution. Average single employee contribution in US was about $118 per mo. ($1415 per year) or 22% of the total premium; employers paid 78% of single coverage premiums on average. Compare how much a month insurance costs in each state. Benefit coverage varies by state and policy.

J.D. Power – 2018 Medicare Advantage Plan Ratings – consumer opinions

J.D. Power and Associates selected Kaiser Permanente as its top Medicare Advantage plan for 2018, the only plan to get a 5-star rating. Highmark came in second with 4 stars. Other plans compared (in order of preference) were Cigna HealthSpring, Humana, UnitedHealthcare, BlueCross BlueShield of Michigan, Aetna, Health Net/Allwell, Anthem and WellCare.  Ratings factors were Overall member satisfaction, Choice of providers, Communication, Claims processing, Customer service, Costs, Coverage and benefits. Unclear how and when the study was done.

Kaiser state health facts: Minority Health Uninsured Rates

Site shows race/ethnicity comparisons for health insurance coverage and uninsured. Shows 2016 data, the third year of coverage through the Health Exchanges. Highest uninsured rates were in TX (17%); Alaska and Florida tied for second worst at 15% uninsured; AZ, Georgia and Mississippi followed with 14% uninsured

Leapfrog Hospital Quality Ratings – For Consumers (all states) Editor's Pick

The Leapfrog Group, an employer-based coalition, asks hospitals to voluntarily report how closely they follow recommended quality and safety practices. CLICK on the blue [i] to the right of each green bar chart to find out if your hospital meets survival expectations and/or volume standards of 50 very-low birth weight babies for High-Risk Delivery-Neonatal ICU patients per year. Info on infection rates and early elective cesarean deliveries also reported. Many, but unfortunately not all hospitals participate; easy to compare. Updated for 2018, but period covered is unclear. Leapfrog was a pioneer in getting ratings in the public eye

Leapfrog Top Hospitals for 2018 (December 2018)

Leapfrog named 118 hospitals to its 2018 Top Hospitals list, including 13 top children’s hospitals and 17 rural hospitals. Hospitals must have responded to Leapfrog’s Hospital Survey. Leapfrog Group is a large employer-based organization whose mission is to trigger giant leaps forward in the safety, quality and affordability of health care. The measures emphasize patient safety

Link to Your State Insurance Department Site (all states)

If you like to browse, your state’s site may have additional information about health insurance. These links are provided by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), the organization of insurance regulators from the 50 states, the District of Columbia and the five U.S. territories. The NAIC site has a Consumer Information Source to find medical loss ratios, financial information, and complaint information on the exchange, HMOs and other health insurance providers

List of Excluded Individuals/Entities (LEIE) – See Who is Excluded from Medicare … Editor's Pick

This fraud prevention site is by the HHS Office of Inspector General. It allows consumer to search for a specific name of a person or business to see if they have been excluded from receiving payment from Medicare and Medicaid, due to license revocation, suspension or surrender; program-related fraud; patient abuse or neglect, and other reasons such as default on Health Education Assistance Loans. Exclusions Database contains physicians, nurses, nurses’ aides, hospital employees, pharmacists, nursing home operators and more. Thousands of listings

Medical Fitness Association: Find an MFA Facility

The Medical Fitness Association (MFA) is a non-profit organization that tracks, supports and promotes the industry of medical fitness centers. Facility locator identifies centers worldwide

Medicare (Inpatient) Prices for Hospitalizations 2016

A difficult to use Excel file of amounts paid to hospitals by Medicare, on average for FY 2016 hospital stays. Listed by DRG and provider, consumers can see the Medicare volume for that diagnosis and how much the hospital was allowed as Covered Charges, plus what Medicare payments were. If you can wade through it, you’ll see that total payments were quite often only one-fourth of what the covered charges were – a 75% discount. Hence, the file illustrates how hospital pricing has become meaningless for most people.

Medicare Ambulatory Surgery Allowed Costs – 25 Commonly Performed Procedures

See this file for 25 procedure payments by Medicare and what they considered the Allowed Amount. This file shows average amounts Medicare paid to Ambulatory Surgery Center (ASC) facilities for selected outpatient surgery such as spinal injection (example: CPT code 62311 Medicare allowed $377, and paid $297), knee arthroscopy (CPT 29881 $1631 allowed), prostate needle biopsy (CPT code 55700 $670 average allowable cost; $530 average cost paid), simple cataract removal & lens insertion ($1679 allowed; Medicare paid $1339), bunion correction ($1825 allowed), crushing kidney stones ($2330 allowed), large bowel endoscopy ($586 allowed, plus $671 for removal of polyps), and more. Includes physician fees and payment to the ASC. Confusing file unless you know CPT codes and can use Excel files. Actual prices or charges are not shown. This is the best of what’s out there nationally, with state average charges. Old 2012 data published Sept. 2013

Medicare Prescription Drug Plans – Premiums and Quality Ratings Editor's Pick

Compare the prices (monthly premium average cost) for prescription drug coverage through Medicare (medicare.gov) and see which plans have higher ratings. Uses a 5-star quality rating system that includes member satisfaction survey reports. 2018 premiums available for open enrollment ending Dec. 7, 2017

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

Nursing Homes & Assisted Living directory (members in LeadingAge)

Browse this database of members in the LeadingAge (formerly American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging, AAHSA) to find nursing homes, assisted living facilities, independent living, adult day care and home & community-based services. Shaped by not-for-profit values

Obesity Rates to 2017, CDC

State-by-state obesity prevalence rates for adults from 2015 to 2017. Data shown in the maps were collected through the CDC’s Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS). Updated October 2018

Office Visit Costs Allowed by Medicare (2012)

Medicare reported its average allowed cost for established patients’ physician office visit in 2012: $69 for CPT code 99213, $102 for 99214. For new patients, office visit 99203 was $103, and 99204 was $158 Allowed by Medicare. More allowed costs and Medicare payments are shown, including ear wax removal ($49 allowed) and Annual wellness visit for new Medicare enrollees ($165 allowed, and $165 paid by Medicare). Average payments exclude the amount the patient pays directly for co-pays and deductibles. Consumers are expected to know CPT codes and how to use Excel files. 2012 data published Sept. 2013

Organ Transplants – Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network

Transplant survival rates on a regional basis (1-year, 3-year, 5-year) compared to national; kidney, pancreas, liver, heart, lung, intestine. Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN) Updated 2019 with 2015 survival data.  Volume of transplants by transplant center updated year-to-date 2019.

Palliative Care – Provider Program Directory

Hospitals with Palliative Care programs are listed in this directory by the Center to Advance Palliative Care (CAPC) in conjunction with the National Palliative Care Registry. Palliative care specializes in the relief of the pain, symptoms and stress of serious illness; it can be provided along with curative treatment.

Physician Payments: Average Medicare payment for 25 Common Office visits

Find out what Medicare paid for certain types of office visits and procedures in 2012. Average doctor’s price is NOT SHOWN, but only the allowed amount determined by Medicare, and how much Medicare paid on average (for every state). Must know how to use Excel files and billing code knowledge would also be helpful. Medicare paid $49 for a 99213 office code (15 minute office visit for an established patient) and $73 for a 25-minute office visit, and just $101 for a 60-minute visit (est. patients). If the patient was new, Medicare paid $73 on average for a 30 minute visit, and $116 for 45 minutes. Medicare’s annual wellness visit was paid at $165 for new enrollees, then $111 for subsequent annual visits. The most common EKG was paid at $14, ear wax removal at $36, pneumonia or annual flu shot at $23. Difficult file to use. Terribly dated; last updated Sept. 2013

Physician: Average Cost for 25 Common Ambulatory Surgery Center Procedures

Find the Allowed Medicare amounts (rather than prices) in the Ambulatory Surgery file for 25 Common high volume outpatient surgical procedures in an Ambulatory Surgery Center (not hospital-based). File shows what Medicare paid during 2012 for cataract surgery, different types of endoscopy, spinal injections, some hernia repairs, carpal tunnel release, kidney stone crushing, prostate biopsy (avg $530 paid on $670 allowable charge; full charge is not shown), correction of bunion, and more. Uses CPT codes, and all states are listed. Difficult file for consumers to use unless familiar with Excel. Terribly dated; last updated Sept. 2013. Federal government could show its commitment to price transparency by updating this file, and showing full sticker prices.

Physicians Rate Health Insurance Plans 2014 (Medscape)

Find out how a sample of 6000 physicians rate Blue Cross, Aetna, CIGNA, Harvard Pilgrim, Medical Mutual of Ohio, Kaiser, Oxford, Humana, HealthNet and UnitedHealthcare health insurance companies (payers). On a scale of 1 (low) to 5 (high), the best can only muster a 3.3 overall rating. Scores indicate how easy a health plan is to do business with. By Medscape. Last Pub. 2014

Premier 2016 QUEST Awards for High-value Healthcare

5 hospital winners were selected for the QUEST® Award for High-value Healthcare. They achieved top performance in all seven of the areas measured: cost and efficiency, inpatient and outpatient evidence-based care, mortality, safety, patient experience and appropriate hospital use.

QIO Listings: Quality Improvement and Innovation Organizations

The mission of the QIO program is to improve the effectiveness, efficiency, economy, and quality of services delivered to Medicare beneficiaries. It has been modified to incorporate Quality Innovation Networks and complaints on behalf of patients and beneficiaries. Find a Quality Improvement Organization here, organized by region and area

Rehabilitation Hospitals – CARF-Accredited Facilities

The Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities offers the ability to do an online search for accredited facilities with specific rehab programs you may be interested in. Includes Behavioral Health, Pain Management, Brain Injury, Spinal Cord, Physical Rehab, Aging services, and more. Search engine is either simple (just zip code) or very complicated because of its detail, abbreviations and multiple choices

State Comparisons: Health Insurance Coverage of Nonelderly 0-64, by state (2017)

Have you ever wondered where the 27 million people under age 65 and without health insurance are located, after the Exchange went into effect? Kaiser Family Foundation shows the number uninsured by state. Ten states make up 60% (over 16 million) of the US uninsured under 65: Texas, California, Florida, Georgia, New York, North Carolina, Illinois, Virginia, Arizona and Pennsylvania. KFF statehealthfacts.org updated 2018

State Comparisons: Percent of Smokers who Tried to Quit Smoking, 2016

Kaiser Family Foundation State Health Facts shows state by state map and table for percent of smokers who attempted to Quit Smoking. Overall 59% tried to quit, US-wide according to the most recent (2016) data. What is happening in your state?

State Health Departments – healthfinder®

List at healthfinder.gov – Links to all state health departments, compiled by the US Department of Health and Human Services

States with Adverse Event reporting systems

Identifies 27 states and Wash. DC that require adverse event reporting. Prepared by the National Academy for State Health Policy, a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to helping states achieve excellence in health policy and practice. Pub. Dec. 2007. The 2014 updated report (pub. Feb. 2015) identifies 26 states and DC, but was not available online in Jan. 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

Top Dentists – by State, US

From usatopdentists.com, comes this list of dentists who received higher ratings in surveys of general dentists and specialists in all states. Search city-specific or statewide within a specialty (including General Dentistry.) Details on dates, methods and how many dentists responded to the survey are unclear (see Selection Process)

Transplant WaitList Editor's Pick

Waiting list numbers of people waiting for a transplant: Kidney, pancreas, liver, intestine, heart, lung transplants. In May 2019, about 95,000 people were waiting for a kidney, and 13,000 for a liver. Survival rates shown by age, sex and ethnicity.

Trauma Programs: Verified Trauma Centers (ACS)

Level I, II and III Trauma Centers are listed here, by state (and other international locations), at the American College of Surgeons’ website. Trauma Center designation is a voluntary process that hospitals may choose to pursue for Adult and/or Pediatric care. Level I is the highest level of five levels. A description of what’s expected to be available at each level can be found at amtrauma.org.

USNews.com America’s Best Hospitals 2018-2019: Honor Roll (20)

Mayo Clinic (Rochester, MN), Cleveland Clinic and Johns Hopkins (Baltimore) top the list of 20 US hospitals identified (from 4656 nationwide), who rank favorably in multiple specialties. Check the details to see specifics for a certain illness, since one hospital may not be ranked (by US News) as best in everything. Methodology report shows how the hospitals scored. Survival rate (30-day mortality rate) for Medicare patients and Patient Safety are two factors used in the rankings for most of the specialties. Reputation used for Ophthalmology, Psychiatry, Rehabilitation and Rheumatology. 2018-2019 ratings use Medicare data from 2014-2016

usnews.com Best Hospitals 2018-19: Pediatric & Children’s Hospitals

US News & World Report’s top pediatric hospitals listed for cancer; cardiology and heart surgery; diabetes and endocrinology; gastroenterology (digestive disorders) & GI surgery; neonatology; nephrology (kidney);  neurology and neurosurgery; orthopedics; pulmonology (respiratory problems); and urology. Honor roll of 10 hospitals is led by Boston Children’s, Cincinnati Children’s, and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. List called Best Children’s Hospitals updated June 2018. Detailed hospital scores for individual measures such as survival, are in the Methodology report

usnews.com Best Hospitals 2018: Cancer Rankings

US News & World Report again named University of Texas MD Anderson (Houston, TX) and Memorial Sloan-Kettering (New York) as its 2018 leaders of the top 50 hospitals for cancer care in the US. Scoring includes survival (30-day mortality), professional reputation, designation from the National Cancer Institute and other factors. Minimum number of cases was 195 (over 3 years), of which 33 needed to be surgical cases.

usnews.com Best Hospitals 2018: Cardiology and heart surgery

Top of the Cardiac specialty list: Cleveland Clinic (Ohio) and Mayo Clinic (Rochester, MN). Top 50 hospitals ranked. See if there is one in your state. Rankings include survival ratings using Medicare data from 2014 to 2016. Hospitals ranked higher if they participated in public transparency reporting by the medical professional societies. Minimum volume of 1391 Medicare cases over 3 years, of which 500 needed to be surgical

usnews.com: Best Medicare Advantage Health Insurance Company 2019 Rankings

Medicare Advantage health insurance companies are shown by state if their plans – together, across the state – have achieved an average of 4.5 of 5 stars by Medicare.  Uses Medicare’s 2019 Star Ratings. Advantage plans combine Part A and Part B. Not every state has a highly rated company. Announcement made in October 2018 by U.S. News & World Report

usnews.com: Best Medicare Part D (Drug) Health Plans 2019 Rankings

Just 12 companies had plans that on average, earned 4.5 or 5 stars from Medicare for Part D (drug) coverage. Eleven companies are some form of Blue Cross drug plan, the other is WPS Health Insurance in Wisconsin. Uses the CMS 2019 Star Ratings.

VA (veterans) Hospitals and Clinics – Access Wait Times and Quality Scores Editor's Pick

Detailed ratings to compare all of the Veterans Health Administration hospitals using current data. Easy to compare waiting time and access for VA clinics in your area, crossing state lines. Access and waiting times are updated for 2019. Very quick to find how long you might have to wait for primary care, mental health, or other specialty appointments. Satisfaction ratings, and ratings of outpatient care.  For comparisons to private hospitals and nursing homes, the VA provides links to the federal HospitalCompare and NursingHomeCompare sites. New website is very user friendly for all types of VA clinics, hospitals, nursing homes. Editor’s Pick.

VA Hospital, Medical Facility Quality and Satisfaction Reports

The Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General (OIG) makes its VA Medical Center oversight reports available online. Titles include Combined Assessment Program or Community Based Outpatient Clinic Reviews; Audits; or Healthcare Inspections. Listed by date; use filters on right within each category to select location. Topics include quality ratings and patient safety, consumer satisfaction & experience of care, nursing home contracts, screening and/or treatment times, volumes and more. Updated 2019

VA Medical Facilities Locator & Directory – Veterans

The Department of Veterans Affairs provides a convenient search tool to find medical facilities such as hospitals and clinics. Facilities in the US, American Samoa, Philippine Islands, Guam, Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands

Walmart’s $4 and $10 Generic Drugs (Some will cost more) – Self-Reported

Walmart has implemented a limited-scope program for nearly 100 generic drugs (with multiple drug/dose combinations) offered at a $4 price for a 30-day supply in most states. Most drugs may also be purchased at $10 for a 90-day supply. Available in all states except North Dakota. However: Due to FAIR PRICING laws in CA, HI, MN, MT, PA, TN, WI and WY, many drugs will carry higher prices, or may not be available. Prices apply to Sam’s Club pharmacies also

Watson Health (Truven) 100 Top Hospitals – 2018 National Winners

List names top 100 hospitals in categories according to size and teaching status using Medicare data primarily from 2015 and 2016, other publicly reported patient satisfaction scores and results such as mortality rates, readmissions, ER times and spending at HospitalCompare. While no data are shown for individual hospital performance, Truven makes a case that as a group these hospitals outperform their peers in quality and efficiency (lower expenses). Free report shows winners’ names only; some winners received the Everest Award for also improving at the fastest rate over the long term. Methodology examines survival, complications and readmissions, patient recommendations; efficiency and profitability. Released March 2018

Watson Health 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals – 2018

Watson Health (formerly Truven Health Analytics) 2018 selection of 50 hospitals with significant heart care programs listed in categories: teaching hospitals with cardiovascular residencies, teaching hospitals without such residencies, and community hospitals. List only, organized by state; study primarily used Medicare data from 2015-2016. It examined both clinical outcomes (e.g. survival or mortality, complications, readmissions) and efficiency measures. Released November 2017

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